Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

San Joaquin Valley farmers could suffer in trade war over tariffs

California’s farm exports totaled $20.59 billion in 2015, with almonds the top exported product at $5.14 billion. Almonds are also Fresno County’s top crop, valued at more than $1 billion.

Aquafornia news Herald and News, Klamath Falls

Klamath Basin water users push back on injunction

A group of Klamath Basin water users Wednesday filed a motion in federal court in San Francisco pushing for at least a delay in the court-ordered injunction to keep 50,000 acre feet held in reserve in Upper Klamath Lake. The water is to be used to flush out the Klamath River in the spring to mitigate the impact of disease on coho salmon.

Aquafornia news Grand Junction, Colorado, Sentinel

Eyes on ag lands

When Colorado River District officials caught wind of investment companies recently buying western Colorado ranches with ample senior water rights, including one north of Fruita, it got their attention. The district, which includes Mesa County and 14 other counties and focuses on the protection, conservation, use and development of Colorado River water in western Colorado, long has been concerned about protecting the region’s agricultural sector.

Aquafornia news The Riverside Press-Enterprise

Members of group that will study Riverside water rates to be chosen

A group that will study possible changes in water rates paid by Riverside agricultural customers is set to be chosen Monday, March 12. The Riverside Public Utilities board will vote on creating the Agricultural Water Rates Task Force at a meeting that begins at 6:30 p.m. in the Riverside City Council chambers, 3900 Main St., according to the meeting agenda.

Aquafornia news Courthouse News Service

Crops engineered to conserve water without drop in yield

A new technique enables crops to use water 25 percent more efficiently without compromising yield, according to a study published Tuesday in the journal Nature Communications.

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Farmers file formal complaint against Oceanside ag initiative backers

Farmers opposed to a proposed ballot measure that could help preserve Oceanside’s disappearing agricultural land have filed a complaint with the Oceanside city clerk, the county district attorney, and the state Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC).

Aquafornia news Ag Alert weekly newspaper, California Farm Bureau Federation

March storms bring small improvement

In the space of two to three weeks, California farmers have had to switch from shirtsleeves to parkas to rain gear. That last one at least offered a glimmer of hope for what has been a gloomy 2018 water season so far.

Aquafornia news Lodi News-Sentinel

Groundwater district explores irrigation options

The proposed South System Groundwater Improvement Project, an $18.75 million plan that would have pumped pressurized surface water from the Mokelumne River along seven miles of new pipeline to Bear Creek and Pixley Slough, allowing farmers to irrigate their crops with surface water instead of depleting groundwater, according to NSJWCD [North San Joaquin Water Conservation District] President Joe Valente.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

States to begin surveys for lesser-prairie chicken

Wildlife managers in several states will begin surveys later this month to track the population of a grouse that has been the focus of an ongoing legal battle over whether it warrants federal protection.

Aquafornia news Northern California Water Association

Blog: Rancher, Farmer, Fisherman

In her book Rancher, Farmer, Fisherman, Miriam Horn has painted a fascinating and compelling picture of the amazing conservation work that is being done out on the landscape by the landowners and other stewards who are making a living from the land, while working equally hard to preserve it for future generations. … We encourage you to either read this excellent book or watch the film by the same name.

Aquafornia news Circle of Blue

Kansas farmers cut Ogallala water use — and still make money

Five years ago, a band of farmers in northwest Kansas decided that pumping prodigious volumes of water from the Ogallala Aquifer was a path to ruin. The vast Ogallala, an underground reserve stretching from South Dakota to Texas, was shrinking.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

To feed the nation, California farmers must adapt to a warming climate, study says

Heat waves, droughts and floods are climate trends that will force California farmers to change some practices — including what they grow — to continue producing yields that historically have fed people nationwide, a new study by the University of California says.

Aquafornia news Bureau of Reclamation

New Release: San Joaquin River Restoration flows’ recapture allowed for Friant Division farmers

The Bureau of Reclamation has signed a finding of no significant impact for the San Joaquin River Restoration Program’s plan to recapture a portion of the 2018 San Joaquin River Restoration Flows at Patterson and/or Banta-Carbona irrigation districts though Feb. 28, 2019. The project involves recapturing Restoration Flows and conveying them via the Delta-Mendota Canal to San Luis Reservoir; they are then available for recirculation to the Friant Division long-term contractors.

Aquafornia news GV Wire

Commentary: Come 2050, Californians will wish they had more dams

A new University of California report forecasts kick-to-the-gut climate-change realities for California farmers, especially those who grow permanent crops in the Central Valley. In a nutshell, the report anticipates big trouble ahead for crops such as almonds, peaches, table grapes, corn and rice.

Aquafornia news Appeal-Democrat

Sites Authority officials appeal project’s initial score

Sites Project Authority officials recently appealed the California Water Commission’s initial public benefit score in hopes of improving their pitch for a chunk of the $2.7 billion in available Proposition 1 funding for state water storage projects.

Aquafornia news The Modesto Bee

Commentary: Bees are actually farmers’ best friends, and vice versa

The arrival of the bees means the almond bloom is near. As an almond farmer, this is when everything starts over. It’s what I [Christine Gemperle] call the promise of spring. As beautiful and inspiring as it sounds, it also comes with plenty of questions, uncertainties and risks. Will it rain on the blossoms?

Aquafornia news Valley Public Radio NPR for Central California

Scientists’ newest tool to fight agricultural toxin: a video game

One of the newest puzzles involves aflatoxin, a family of carcinogens that contaminate crops around the globe and lead to serious health problems. In Foldit’s Aflatoxin Challenge, players try to fold a protein into a shape that’ll break down the aflatoxin molecule into something harmless.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

California agriculture at risk due to climate change, scientists say

Over the past decade, California farmers have been seeing symptoms of climate change in their fields and orchards: less winter chill, crops blooming earlier, more heat waves and years of drought when the state baked in record temperatures. Scientists say California agriculture will face much bigger and more severe impacts due to climate change in the coming decades.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Q&A: How much snow next winter? It may not remain a mystery much longer.

If we had known a year ago that this winter would be so dry, would we have conserved water more aggressively last summer? Would ski resorts have installed more snowmaking equipment? Would farmers buy different seeds to plant this spring?

Aquafornia news Associated Press

US considers protected status for wild spring Chinook

Federal fisheries officials said Tuesday they will consider putting the Pacific Northwest’s once-flourishing wild spring-run Chinook salmon on the list of threatened or endangered species. The National Marine Fisheries Services plans a 12-month review on whether to give protected status to the salmon in and around the Klamath River.