Bad,bad, Palm Springs!
And unmetered central valley.
This post was edited by stanofh on Sun, Feb 9, 14 at 13:59
Not me, either. Guess where Sacto and environs "get" their water? From our rivers, poor salmon et al.
It would be interesting to see a breakdown of how the water is being used in each of those areas. SF is 100 gal/day? That seems high for us apartment dwellers but if you factor in the water used to grow our food and meats it should shift some of the blame off of the agricultural regions.
Water meters seem to be common sense to me. Pay per per usage. Let the market forces sort some of it out.
What you don't understand about Palm Springs and all the golf courses in the Coachella Valley is that they are 35' BELOW sea level! They have more water then any of us ever will have, and they recycle it.
So worry about your usage and not what the desert uses. Move there! Live in those shoes! Your water bill will be cheap but that hot sun will prevent you from growing what you love!
Said from experience!
I was told when my sister lived there that there was an underground river and that was why the homes in Rancho Mirage require lawns. Believe me thats a crock!! If they have it although since then I have heard it is drying up then it should go to farming!
Well, the Coachella valley is where huge vineyards are located. Anytime you purchase seedless grapes at the grocery, they probably were grown there. Farming is huge in the desert. Artichokes are another crop grown in the winter. Citrus thrives. Date groves use copious amounts of water. More land is dedicated to farming in the Coachella valley than to golf courses and lawns.
Some homeowner's associations fine owners if they don't abide by the rules. If the rules say you will have a lawn, then you will have a lawn. PGA West was like that, but I noticed they are moving to more of a low water desert scape in their plantings.
Most housing developments there are run by HOAs, and THEY control what gets planted (which is why we moved to private property in a better climate), but the homeowner pays for all water connected to the house and pool and anything specific that they plant.
Palm Springs may be sitting on a huge aquifer, but they have had to pump water into it from the Colorado River in order to stop the city from sinking due to aquifer depletion.
Well, some crops like Rice,Cotton,and Corn just are done because we subsidize them!...for the water they need-Rice paddys!- the market isn't there otherwise.
And those golf courses...cannot be THAT important. Lush lawns of a thousand acres going around Saguaro's..makes the homeowner in PS look like a gnat in water use. Homeowners state wide use ~8%?..and THAT's who's being asked to sacrifice?
I just looked up the elevation and Palm Springs is 450 ft and Ranch Mirage is in the 300 range.
I am on a well and very careful about water - no lawns! Drought tolerant plants. Also the process they do in the fall is very hard on people's repertory systems. That dead grass goes everywhere.
California's rice fields provide critical habitat for migrating birds, as well as other wildlife. During periods of drought, they are even more important. Wetland habitat in the Central Valley has declined so much that rice fields provide 80 percent of the flood habitat for migrating shorebirds, geese and ducks.
Its the lesser of two evils? Rice as habitat for native birds vs real wetlands.... against development or dry fields? Lets restore real wetlands so wildlife isn't dependent on a useless crop like rice. And one that's not even dependable,unlike real wetlands.
IMO The Migratory Bird Conservation Partnership is one of the more exciting and innovative cooperative efforts taking place in CA for migratory birds right now. With 85-90 percent of the wetlands already gone, sadly, I cannot see how it would be feasible to restore a sufficient amount of natural wetlands; during multi-year stretches of drought, even less so. The birds aren't using the rice exactly--it is the flooded fields following the harvest. To have farmers working with conservation groups in this effort, and aid in the study of variables for optimum use by the birds (water depth, berm shapes, etc.), is a positive thing that will hopefully be expanded into other cooperative efforts. We can wish all we want when it comes to water, and quite a few other things actually, but wishes and options are often not to be found overlapping.
In the drive from Fairfield to Rio Vista, there used to be mile after mile of birds using wetlands there. Those wetlands are mostly gone and it is sad and alot less interesting to drive that way.
I would like to see wetlands restored. There would be more plant diversity and places for wildlife. Growing rice seems wasteful. I'm glad the birds have something but I wish it was wild land instead.
For those who eat rice, or rice products, one should be happy that it is grown in California. It's my understanding that rice grown in California contains lower levels of arsenic than is found in rice from other states.....
This rice discussion has nothing to do with my zone, but our car did die once there in Willows, CA! Rice Fields! OMG! Hot Steamy!
It was surprising to see those. We had to stay a day in miserable weather (like Viet Nam) waiting for a part.
I had no idea rice was grown in California. I live where they grow Citrus, and vineyards abound.
BUT, I vote to keep the water on for the food crops, and let the flowers and the lawns die.
Rice has always been grown above Sacramento as long as I can remember. This is not new. Penny
No,not new,but its always been a waste of water and a form of farmer welfare. The ones who went before the president and disrespected his aide,fell back on a self righteous "We don't want handouts".. That's what cotton and rice have always been in California!.
I've never seen California grown rice for sale. Must be where they subsidize and sell California grown Coffee!..wink,wink.
This post was edited by stanofh on Sun, Mar 2, 14 at 20:00
We've been buying Lundberg organic rice for years....your grocery store has it....
there used to be a sake plant in Napa using rice from Sacramento. Now they have moved back to Japan because they get rice from Vietnam
Napa, to be fair a lot of that land between Fairfield and Rio Vista is part of the Jepson Prairie and is only wetland part of the year (vernal pools); the rest of the year it is bone dry. They give tours out there. It is really fascinating how the salamanders, shrimp, fish, etc. survive. I'm sure years like this must be extra tough out there though.
Have you seen these photos of Folsom Lake? Crazy stuff.
Here is a link that might be useful: Dry Folsom Lake
Vernal pools are part of the natural California ecosystem. Native amphibians,shrimp and of course native trees and plants all create a far more diverse wetland. No Tule elk grazing in rice fields or bobcats looking for prey...
That might satisfy birders or duck hunters..does almost nothing for me.
And like I said,if those crops were self sufficient, profitable without the tax welfare....then that's a different story.
Interesting article today in the bay area news group paper. 40% of all home use water is by 255,000 homes in the central valley's unmetered areas. 40%!
And in the few parts of the valley where it is metered? They are given rock bottom prices...and thus use much more water still then LA.-SF,SD areas.