What is the cost of defying California’s environmental laws? Less than $50. That’s all Northern California farmers will pay for blatantly draining the Shasta River in defiance of the state’s drought regulations last summer, likely killing protected salmon. The Shasta River Water Association is an irrigation district serving about 100 farmers and ranchers in Siskiyou County. Over eight days, its members drained nearly two-thirds of the river to fill livestock ponds in the area. This was the primary finding of a Bee investigation that suggests California is unable to stop farmers from draining water as they wish — no matter how much damage is done to the environment.