Ag Today Wednesday, January 20, 2016
Wednesday, January 20, 2016
San Francisco Chronicle
Just like city folk, water rights holders will have to track usage
By Kurtis Alexander
Even as California has marched out unprecedented water restrictions during the drought, the spigots at thousands of farms and ranches have gone largely unmonitored — a vestige of the state’s Gold Rush-era water policy.
On Tuesday, state water officials did away with this historical oversight. Acknowledging they can’t manage what they can’t measure, regulators in Sacramento passed rules to require holders of longtime water rights to track and report what they draw from rivers and creeks.
Unlike residential water customers in virtually every...
Ag Today Tuesday, January 19, 2016
Tuesday, January 19, 2016
California farmers brace for water shortage despite El Niño
By Scott Smith
FRESNO -- Farmers in California's fertile San Joaquin Valley are bracing to receive no irrigation water from a federal system of reservoirs and canals for a third consecutive year and looking to El Nino to produce the very wet winter they need.
The year kicked off with heavy rains and an above-average snowpack in the Sierra Nevada. The El Nino -- a global weather system associated with wet winters in California -- may play out nationwide through late spring or beyond, officials at the National Oceanic...
Ag Today Friday, January 15, 2016
Friday, January 15, 2016
Authorities in California plan to temporarily reduce water deliveries for up to 25 million in Central and Southern California
By Ellen Knickmeyer
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Saying current water conditions pose particular peril for the state's tiny, disappearing Delta smelt, federal officials moved to temporarily reduce water deliveries for farmers and millions of other Californians.
Especially muddy water from winter storms is among the factors that risk sweeping some of the world's few remaining Delta smelt off course and into giant water pumps that draw water from the Sacramento-San Joaquin river deltas, U.S. Fish and Wildlife officials said.
Ag Today Wednesday, January 13, 2016
Wednesday, January 13, 2016
Clashes on California water resume in DC with introduction of drainage bill
By Michael Doyle
WASHINGTON - U.S. lawmakers from California have more political turbulence ahead of them with the introduction Tuesday of a bill to settle a long-running San Joaquin Valley irrigation drainage dispute.
The legislation by Rep. David Valadao, R-Hanford, would implement a sweeping drainage settlement reached between the Obama administration and the Westlands Water District. It also reignites some of the same regional and partisan conflicts that have dogged past water bills.
“This legislation is necessary to approve and authorize the drainage settlement,” Valadao said, adding...
Ag Today Tuesday, January 12, 2016
Tuesday, January 12, 2016
ENVIRONMENT: Supreme Court won't disturb protections for Santa Ana sucker fish
By Janet Zimmerman
A years-long battle over habitat protections for the Santa Ana sucker fish came to an end Monday when the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review a case brought by a dozen Inland water agencies.
The water districts have been fighting the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s designation of 9,331 acres along the Santa Ana River in Riverside and San Bernardino counties, and a few waterways in Los Angeles County, as critical habitat for the fish.
Critical habitat is land deemed crucial to the survival of...
Ag Today Monday, January 11, 2016
Monday, January 11, 2016
Rural Californians sympathize with protesters’ goals in Oregon standoff
By Ryan Sabalow, Dale Kasler and Phillip Reese
Jerry Kresge, a cattle rancher in the remote northeast corner of California, doesn’t necessarily agree with the tactics of the armed activists who have seized a federal office building in Burns, Ore.
But he shares their frustration.
Like the activists in Oregon, Kresge says the federal government’s grip on vast stretches of land in the West has become a stranglehold. Kresge, 56, is even thinking of driving to Burns, about 200 miles from his Modoc County ranching operation, as a show of...
Ag Today Friday, January 8, 2016
Friday, January 8, 2016
Fresno Business Journal
Valley dairies struggle to survive as milk price continues to sour
By George Lurie
An abundance of cheap oil translates into $2-a-gallon gas and lower fuel costs for businesses involved in transportation and manufacturing.
But an oversupply of milk — and the rock-bottom prices dairymen are now getting because of the imbalance — is resulting in tough times at Valley dairies.
With milk futures currently trading south of $15 per hundred weight on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, it’s been a bleak winter for dairymen, most of whom need a $16-to-$17-per-hundredweight milk price to pay their operating expenses.
Ag Today Thursday, January 7, 2016
Thursday, January 7, 2016
Los Angeles Times
Eggs and coffee get the all-clear in new dietary guidelines just issued by the U.S.
By Melissa Healy
In the first slate of nutritional recommendations it has issued since 2011, the federal government on Thursday gave Americans the go-ahead to eat eggs and others foods rich in cholesterol, to drink as many as five cups of coffee daily and to enjoy a range of fats long avoided by many.
The new dietary guidelines, issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services, are the first ever to recommend a limit --...
Ag Today Wednesday, January 6, 2016
Wednesday, January 6, 2016
KFSN TV, Fresno
Farmers welcome series of storms
By Dale Yurong
FRESNO, Calif. -- Not much work can get done on valley farms when it rains but growers will take the trade-off.
Farmers are no doubt encouraged by the storms lining up to pass through the valley. But at this point, it is just a good start.
A good soaking was just what Larry Cruff needed in his Selma vineyard. He grows 500 acres of raisin grapes. Cruff explained, "You see no water standing. It's been raining here all morning and outside a little bit here on the end the water...
Ag Today Monday, January 4, 2016
Monday, January 4, 2016
Tunnels fight changes venue
By Alex Breitler
Ten years after the first seeds were planted for the proposed twin tunnels, the battle shifts to a new arena in 2016 — a critical year for the controversial project.
A small state agency will soon begin the daunting process of deciding whether to change the water rights for the state and federal water projects, allowing them to divert some of their water from the Sacramento River and bypass the Delta for the first time.
The water rights must be changed before a shovelful of earth can be turned.
But it won’t be...