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San Francisco irrigation district sues California for water cuts

Water flows through the irrigation canal next to a farm in Modesto, California.

Mario Tama | Getty Images

A group of irrigated districts in San Francisco and the Central Valley have sued California for implementing drought restrictions that prevent thousands of landowners and farmers from removing water from rivers and streams.

Simultaneous city and water department Proceedings At Fresno County Superior Court. The proceedings allege that the California Water Resources Management Commission does not have the legal authority to require senior water holders, including farmers and agricultural suppliers, to stop diversions, even during droughts. ..

The battle begins as California tackles a record drought that runs out of reservoir levels and threatens water supply.US drought monitor shows that Over 93% of states Today, severe droughts are causing exceptional droughts, which are getting worse as the climate changes.

As water scarcity worsens, similar battles could take place across the southwestern United States over the next few years.For example, earlier this year, the U.S. Pioneer Department announced the following plans: Water distribution from the Colorado River He went to Arizona and Nevada, paving the way for the fight against farmers and municipalities in these states.

August, state legislature I ordered about 4,500 water rights holders Sacramento experiencing low water levels due to drought-to stop drawing water from rivers and canals that supply the San Joaquin River Delta. This order was one of the most aggressive reductions ever under the state. Water rights system.

State officials claimed that the order would help protect drinking water supplies, prevent salt ingress, and protect stored water to protect the environment. The Delta basin supplies drinking water to two-thirds of the state.

“This decision is not about prioritizing one group over others, but about protecting the basin for everyone, implementing a water rights priority system, and ensuring that the drought is managed.” Said E. Joaquin Eskibel, Chairman of the State Commission. August statement.

The proceedings allege that the state commission does not have the authority to reduce water rights secured before 1914, when the state legislature began restricting water intake. The proceedings allege that prior to 1914, only the court had jurisdiction over the owner’s water rights. The state legislature also claims that it does not properly measure water usage and therefore cannot distribute water properly.

The San Hoakin Tributary Bureau is a coalition of water departments that includes suppliers such as Modesto Irrigation District, Tarlock Irrigation District, Oakdale Irrigation District, Merced Irrigation District, South San Hoakin Irrigation District, and San Francisco.

A state legislature spokesperson refused to comment on the proceedings.

Doug Obegi, Senior Attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council, Said in a blog post on Wednesday Contrary to the proceedings, San Francisco and other pre-1914 water concessionaires are actually subject to state legislature authority.

The recent proceedings are “just the latest example of a few privileged people who falsely claim that water rights are beyond the law,” Obegi said.

San Francisco irrigation district sues California for water cuts

Source link San Francisco irrigation district sues California for water cuts

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