Representatives from three California agencies will gather Tuesday in Sacramento to discuss agricultural water transfers and drought preparedness.
Californias farmers and ranchers need to prepare for a potentially significant drought year, warned Karen Ross, who heads the states Department of Food and Agriculture. We are looking at scenarios in which considerable land fallowing and unsustainable groundwater overdraft will occur, leading to direct impacts within our rural farming communities.
Ross said federal and state government agencies are partnering to provide information on drought preparedness for the agricultural sector.
California State Board of Food and Agriculture and representatives from the California Department of Water Resources and State Water Resources Control Board will meet from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the main auditorium at 1220 N St., Sacramento.
The State Water Project already has announced a 5 percent allocation for water contractors, which is among the lowest on record. Nine of Californias 12 major reservoirs are at less than 50 percent capacity, and theres been very little rain so far this season.
We are sounding the alarm on behalf of the agricultural industry, said Craig McNamara, president of the states food and agriculture board. With the strong potential that California is entering its third dry year, we need to start planning now to minimize long-term impacts.
Among those scheduled to speak are: Bill Croyle, Department of Water Resources; Tom Howard, Water Resources Control Board; Paul Fujitani, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation; Luana Kiger, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service; and Navdeep Dhillon, USDA Farm Service Agency.
Additional speakers include: Randy Fiorini, Delta Stewardship Council; David Guy, Northern California Water Association; Jason Peltier, Westlands Water District; and Thad Bettner, Glenn-Colusa Irrigation District.
This meeting will be streamed online at: www.cdfa.ca.gov/LiveMediaStream.html.