Severe drought conditions have inflicted harsh realities throughout California. Well, almost everywhere. While community wells run dry, farm fields turn to dust and key reservoirs are at near all-time lows, Delta farmers are stealing millions of gallons of water set aside for fish, wildlife and the environment, as well as other water users. And, yes, these are the same Delta farmers who are funding the No on Proposition 1 campaign, opposing a water bond measure that seeks to fund critical needs across the state.
In 2013, Endangered Species Act (ESA) restrictions directly resulted in the loss of more than 800,000 acre-feet of water that could have been delivered to San Joaquin Valley, Bay Area and Southern California businesses and residents. This would have been enough water to supply 1.6 million homes with water for a year or to irrigate 400,000 acres of farmland.
In 2013, San Francisco, which garners its water supplies from the same Delta watershed, received its entire water supply, with no restrictions.