Farm leader: Continued progress on water improvements is crucial
» July 25, 2012 «
As Gov. Brown and federal officials released revised plans today for addressing problems in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and improving California water reliability, California Farm Bureau Federation President Paul Wenger said the outcome will be crucial to the state's farmers and ranchers.
"In nearly every corner of California, family farmers and ranchers have a stake in the outcome of delta decisions. So do the people in California, the United States and throughout the world who depend on the food and farm products grown by our farmers," Wenger said.
"Farmers will continue to use water as efficiently as they can to nourish their crops, replenish their soil and benefit the wildlife that lives on farmland," he said, noting that since 1967, crop production in California has doubled, while farm water use has risen just 10 percent.
"But water efficiency has its limits," Wenger said. "To sustain agricultural production to feed our growing population, California must add new surface water storage as a crucial element in resolving our state's water problems."
New storage provides additional benefits for urban residents and industries, for flood control, recreation, power generation and in improved flexibility for protecting the environment, he said.
"Farm Bureau policy seeks a water system solution that brings benefits for all California agriculture and that hinges on enhanced water storage and improved water conveyance. We will look carefully at the revised Bay-Delta Conservation Plan and review it with that in mind," Wenger said.
"Many people have worked for many years to get us to this point. More years of hard work and goodwill will be needed to achieve our goal of an improved water system that meets the economic and environmental needs of our state," he said. "Farm Bureau will continue to press for solutions that benefit all California agriculture and those who depend on our farmers and ranchers."
The California Farm Bureau Federation works to protect family farms and ranches on behalf of more than 74,000 members statewide and as part of a nationwide network of more than 6.2 million Farm Bureau members.
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