These Imperial Valley farmers want to pay more for their Colorado River water
Colorado River water was virtually free in the early 20th Century when pioneers dug the valley’s first canals that would later transform this desert landscape into a $2 billion agricultural industry. Imperial Valley farmers now pay about $20 an acre foot to transport Colorado River water to their fields, a price unchanged since 2011. … Farmers next door in San Diego County pay between $799 and $1,109 per acre foot. Even the Coachella Valley Water District, just north of Imperial Valley, charges farmers about $37 per acre foot, nearly twice what the Imperial Irrigation District charges its farmers…. Because water is so cheap, Imperial Irrigation District doesn’t make enough selling it to cover expenses on water revenues alone….
- Bakersfield Californian, written by Dave Puglia, president of Western Growers: Community Voices - The water supply crisis is devastating California’s farms. It’s time for a crisis-level response.