States, federal and Mexican officials hailed a binational agreement this fall that they said could lead to a radical shift in how the region prepares for and responds to drought. But three months later, they appear no closer to a drought contingency plan, as negotiations have pitted states and water districts against one another, as the U.S. tries to hammer out details of the plan.
In the month of October nearly 250,000 acres, more than 8,000 homes and over 40 people fell victim to fast-moving wildfires in Northern California, the deadliest and one of the costliest outbreaks in state history. Now more wind-drive wildfires have scorched over 80,000 acres in Ventura and Los Angeles counties, forcing thousands to evacuate and closing hundreds of schools. This disastrous fire season raises hard questions.
Former President Barack Obama on Tuesday told a summit of mayors driven to act after President Donald Trump rejected the Paris climate accord that cities and states are the “new face of American leadership” on climate change. … Mayors from 51 cities including Paris, Mexico City, San Francisco and Phoenix attended the summit.
In a commentary in The San Diego Union-Tribune last month, San Diego businessman Jon C. Jacobson made a persuasive case that repeated sewage spills at the California-Mexican border should be addressed as the Trump administration tries to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement.
An increasing number of U.S. Border Patrol agents at the Imperial Beach station have reported a host of health problems since February, when an estimated 143 million gallons of Mexican sewage spilled into the Tijuana River Valley they patrol.
The Colorado River and its tributaries provide water for about 40 million people and farmlands from Wyoming to Mexico. … In the Mexicali Valley, farmers say they’re concerned that as the pressures on the river grow – and as the [United States-based Constellation Brands'] brewery drinks up more of that precious supply – they’re likely to get less water.
The Sacramento Committee of Water for People is featuring “Bowl with Water for People” on Wednesday, June 25, at the Country Club Lanes, 2500 Watt Avenue, Sacramento. Registration is 5:30-6 p.m. Bowling is from 6-8 p.m.
“The Imperial Irrigation District Board of Directors was briefed Tuesday about discussions between representatives of the United States and Mexico regarding a potential turnout from the All-American Canal to Mexico.”
“Chile’s government rejected an $8 billion proposal to dam Patagonian rivers to meet the country’s growing energy demands, handing a victory to environmentalists who praised Tuesday’s ruling as a landmark moment.”
From the Las Vegas Review-Journal, in a commentary by David Festa and John Entsminger:
“Today, there is water flowing in the Colorado River Delta — where water has not flowed regularly for half a century — all because water managers, conservation organizations and policymakers in both the United States and Mexico were able to find common ground. …Someone cue music heralding the ‘new era of Western water management.’”
“Thanks to improved technology, turning ocean water into freshwater is becoming more economically feasible. And a looming global water crisis may make it crucial to the planet’s future.
‘Whenever a drought exacerbates freshwater supplies in California, people tend to look toward the ocean for an answer,” said Jennifer Bowles, executive director of the California-based Water Education Foundation.’”
“The Colorado River has been reunited with an old friend—the sea. Thanks to an agreement between the U.S. and Mexico, water from the river has reached the Sea of Cortez in northwestern Mexico for the first time since either 1998 (according to National Geographic) or 1993 (according to AP).”
From the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) Voices blog, in a post by Jennifer Pitt:
“This week, the Colorado River will be reunited with the sea – a destination it hasn’t seen in many years – thanks to the ‘pulse flow.’ Scientists monitoring the flow expect the two waters to meet sometime today [May 15], during high tide, but it’s actually possible that the river reached the sea last week, as we learned from a handful of adventurers who rode their stand-up paddle boards to the tidal interface.”
“There’s an old saying in the American West: ‘Water flows uphill toward money.’ The same holds true in China, where engineers are building a 1,500-mile network of canals and tunnels to divert water from the rain-abundant south to Beijing and other wealthy northern cities.”
“If ‘Watermark’ does nothing else, it will make you question society’s contradictory view of water use. The clear liquid is as essential to human life as it is threatened, yet we don’t seem to be able to do what it takes to make sure it stays available enough to keep us alive.”
“The only municipality in Baja California that is not supplied by the Colorado River, Ensenada depends largely on aquifers for its supply, with a small portion provided by rainwater held behind the Emilio López Zamora Dam. But as a lack of rainfall and high temperatures emptied the reservoir and lowered the aquifers to dangerously low levels, authorities have been forced to implement a rationing plan.”