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California Stiffens Water Regulations Amid Devastating Drought


#1

California Stiffens Water Regulations Amid Devastating Drought

Nadia Prupis, staff writer

As California approaches the end of a disappointing rainy season, officials are further narrowing restrictions on water usage to help stave off the effects of the state's ravaging four-year drought crisis.

Following record-low rainfall from December to April, with no extra precipitation expected for the rest of the year, the California State Water Resources Control Board voted Tuesday to increase emergency regulations on water usage for citizens and businesses alike.


#2

When the masses begin their eastward migration from near-future Atacama Desert-like California, I hope they pass Pittsburgh by. We don't need any more gentrification and housing inflation and traffic jams and yuppie snobbery and overpriced restaurants than we already have in our once humble and down-to-earth neighborhoods.

So everybody practice your most grating yinzer accent and eat more greasy pierogies with lots of strong onions. We'll drive the Kalifornians away through sheer unfashionable rust-belt mill-hunk gauche.

Oh, and we have the only Tesla charger in the whole western half of the state - I can see the California-tagged eastbound Teslas backed up to Wheeling waiting to use it...

Hint....Detroit could use some help - East Cleveland too. Maybe Buffalo...


#4

We're safe from Cali-hordes in Oklahoma then (there has to be some upside to living in this flippin' state!) Water restrictions are already stricter in our town than California's appear to be. No watering outside for any reason - lawns, gardens, no sprinklers, no car wash, pavement wash, etc. on pain of a hefty fine.


#5

Now Playing: "The Hoax of Frankenstein." written by Malthus, produced in cooperation with Hubris, and directed by James Inhofe.

On screen 2: "If the French only had a word for Entrepreneur." Our fearless Senator Hero, in a flash of free market brilliance, and as the new Chair of the Senate Environmental Committee, slips a huge grant into the new budget bill, funding that spunky Bostonian to ship snow to California, one box at a time. Madcap comedy you'll be required to watch.


#7

Contrary to popular notions, the bottled water and any other removal of water from the watershed is a miniscule impact on the water flow through the Great Lakes. Just a look at the unvarying 220,000 cubic feet per second flow out of Lake Erie into the Niagara at Buffalo will show you that. The Michigan/Huron lake level issues have to do with ill-advised navigation dredging of the "natural weir" of the St. Clair River, not water exporting.

But the return of water quality problems is definitely an issue - almost all due to fertilizer laden ag-runoff. The toxic algae bloom and fish kills in western Lake Erie were horrific last summer.

If there was ever a scheme to divert a large amount of water from, say, Lake Superior to the west coast (a very difficult engineering project - not sure it is doable at all) all hell would be raised. It would for starters, require some kind of treaty with Canada (Ontario). Everyone in the USA seem to forget that they "own" half of the Great Lakes They would have to pay for the lost hydropower capacity at Niagara Falls for starters.


#8

Why should America tremble with men like Inhofe in positions of power!
Oh my - if we don't laugh we'll cry!


#9

"The board is keeping previously established restrictions, which
prohibit Californians from over-watering, using water to clean off their
sidewalks, using sprinklers in the rain, or watering outdoor landscapes
within 48 hours of rainfall."

These are called restrictions?????? No wonder they are not enough!!


#10

Do you live in Portland? With the big Columbia flowing past, its hard to believe there would ever be any water shortages there.


#11

No mention of fracking being banned, a critical issue for Californians. From
biologicaldiversity.org:

Fracking has been documented in 10 California counties — Colusa, Glenn, Kern, Los Angeles, Monterey, Sacramento, Santa Barbara, Sutter, Kings and Ventura. Oil companies have also fracked offshore wells hundreds of times in the ocean near California’s coast, from Seal Beach to the Santa Barbara Channel.

In Kern County, California’s major oil-producing county, 50 percent to 60 percent of new oil wells are fracked, according to estimates by Halliburton. And fracking may have been done elsewhere in California, since state officials haven’t monitored or tracked the practice until recently.

Rising oil prices are driving up interest in exploiting oil in the Monterey Shale using extreme fossil fuel extraction techniques such as fracking. This geological formation under the San Joaquin and the Los Angeles basins may hold a large amount of dirty, carbon-intensive oil.


#12

How about shutting down casinos(does California have any?)... or no big stadium games... all that flushing you know... or any of the many luxury activities that most people participate in... that take water to do... like... how about.. filling swimming pools... I mean, with the ocean near by... heck.. who needs a pool?
Okay, so those more inland couldn't get to the pool in a convenient amount of time?....so, try a creek next door... if it still has water in it...
Let's hope that they always have enough water to keep those spent fuel rods covered...etc... and preferably, enough to shut them down... meaning enough for 40 years or so of soaking the damn things...


#14

You forgot to mention golf courses.


#15

No shortage of green lawns yet. triumph


#16

Yunzer said:

Do you live in Portland? With the big Columbia flowing past, its hard to believe there would ever be any water shortages there.

I read the Columbia is radioactive from Plutonium runoff at Hanford Nuclear Bomb plant. The question is simply how much will cause cancer in you?

Since none of us evolved around Pu-239, the answer is that no amount of ingested/inhaled heavy, unstable, man-made radioisotopes are safe for you. Regardless of the fact that the useless Feds keep raising the maximum Federal Water standard radiation readings, without any medical evidence it is safe to do so.

Look at the mess this Federal Government has produced at home and abroad. Overflowing with incompetence and willful negligence. Bought off at every turn by Lobbyists in Washington D.C.

Considering the Feds authorized Fracking, we'd be far better off just firing everyone in Washington, and transferring authority to local cities who have to drink this draino. Who from California would want to move to the urban Coal mining tailings of Pennsylvania or the Fracking Fields all over the rest of the US? Who can drink out of the tap anymore there without getting sick? The Great Lakes also have a nuke fuel reprocessing plant caught leaking right on the shore. I don't think you have to worry about a California invasion. You should be worried about a Florida invasion when it goes under water all the way in a few more years! People can live without washing cars and green lawns. They can't live in Miami's Flooded Salt Water streets if it gets much higher.

The good news, for the US is that Dr. Jeff Masters and his pals at Weather Underground have spotted conditions favorable for a large El Nino later in the year. That's bad news for me, as it is the harbinger of strong and plentiful typhoons in the Western Pacific.


#17

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#18

My thought exactly. Want to save water - step 1: ban fracking.


#19

Not to deny the large-scale environmental disaster underway, which is reducing our sources of water. But apparently there are significant "local" political measures that can be undertaken to reduce the use and loss of water. Here's an article in this week's (SF) East Bay Express that indicates some large misappropriations; you'd like to think they could be remedied...

(Arggh, system won't let me post a link! - Do a search on "California Targets Wrong Water Wasters" and you should see it right away...)


#20

Number 1 would actually be STOP RAISING ANIMALS FOR FOOD. and stop watering the crops that are used to feed animals that are raised for food.

Just sayin. Easy enough fix. Cowspiracy dot com.

Fracking (hydraulic fracturing) water use ranges from 70-140 billion gallons annually.

“Draft Plan to Study the Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing on Drinking Water Resources.” EPA Office of Research and Development. United States Environmental Protection Agency, 2011.

epa.gov/sites/production/files/documents/HFStudyPlanDraft_SAB_020711.pdf

Animal agriculture use ranges from 34-76 trillion gallons of water annually. [ii]

Pimentel, David, et al. “Water Resources: Agricultural And Environmental Issues.” BioScience 54, no. 10 (2004): 909-18.
bioscience.oxfordjournals.org/content/54/10/909.full

Barber, N.L., “Summary of estimated water use in the United States in 2005: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2009–3098.”

pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2009/3098/

Agriculture is responsible for 80-90% of US water consumption.

“USDA ERS – Irrigation & Water Use.” United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service. 2013.

ers.usda.gov/topics/farm-practices-management/irrigation-water-use/background.aspx