Congress is at it again....draft "drought relief" legislation that will do little to provide real drought relief but includes a long wish list from the water barons that will almost certainly drive the Delta smelt to extinction in the wild and further decimate Central Valley salmon and steelhead.
Please contact your senators and federal representatives to oppose any "drought relief" legislation that:
Urge your representatives to instead introduce and pass true drought relief legislation for California that protects water quality, aquatic ecosystems, and native fish and wildlife in our rivers and estuaries, while providing effective and timely relief to California communities, industry, and farms.
Effective drought relief legislation should focus on those immediate actions that will extend our existing supplies, boost water conservation and efficiency, provide immediate relief for economically disadvantaged communities and neighborhoods that have run out of water, help mitigate the economic impacts of reduced water deliveries to farms, and encourage the permanent establishment of fundamental and long term changes in how water is managed and used in California.
This goal is achievable only if the drought relief bill is drafted in public with the full participation of and input from all of California's water stakeholders.
California does need federal assistance and relief from this devastating drought. But Congress should not make this situation worse by passing drought relief legislation that overrides environmental laws, weakens state water rights authority, and focuses on actions that will provide little immediate drought relief.