From News Line, a daily compilation of farm water news distributed to CFWC members and others upon request. To receive News Line, click here.
Coalition response…Dr. William Patzert misses a key point in his comments about agricultural water use. Farmers use water to grow the food people in Southern California and across the nation buy at the grocery store. It may seem to Patzert that farm water use is high but farmers and consumers are actually on the same side of the table. Consumers want a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables at an affordable price for their families. Farmers need dependable water supplies to grow them.
Since 2003 San Joaquin Valley farmers have invested more than $2 billion on upgraded irrigation systems. In recent decades food production has doubled while the amount of water used to grow it has remained about the same. On-farm water use efficiency is state of the art. Dr. Patzert would do well to examine the benefits consumers derive from California farms rather than simply accusing farmers of using too much water.