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Impressive Temperance Flat presentation heard by Water Commission

December 20,2017-
Screen Shot 2017-12-20 at 11.58.05 AMSome 12 proposed water storage projects shared the stage at a recent  California Water Commission meeting with all vying for some share to be apportioned from the same $2.7 billion pot of money available through the Proposition 1 water bond.

Kings County chair of the Board of Supervisors Craig Pedersen attended the meeting and found the presentation by advocates of the Temperance Flat project above Fresno, to be the most compelling. “ It was just terrific” showing how the new dam’s benefits were widespread, he said.

“I know some environmental groups offered negative comments but I would be very surprised if the project does not get commission funding.”

The state agency has said it would make a decision by June. Peterson like many in Kings County is a strong supporter of Temperance Flat and fierce critic of another storage project seeking funding – Semitropic Water Storage District’s Kettleman Reservoir. On the edge of the historic lakebed Semitropic could bank up to 120,000 acre-feet a year of Kings River floodwaters – water would be conveyed from there via the California Aqueduct to the Semitropic Water Bank in Kern County.

California Farm Bureau’s Director of Water Resources Danny Merkle, speaking to the commission said “California will continue to face intense water challenges.”

“Now more than ever, California’s water system needs a more flexible, environmentally friendly and sustainable solution for diverting and storing water during periods of excess flows for human and environmental uses during dry periods.”

Steve Worthley, San Joaquin Valley Water Infrastructure Authority president and Tulare County supervisor, described the serious water situation the San Joaquin Valley faces, especially in light of new requirements under SGMA – the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act.

“Without new water sources, (coming into compliance under SGMA) is quite simply an impossibility. Farmers are very efficient with their use of water, but at the end of the day, we are going to lose perhaps millions of acres of agricultural land. We need this opportunity to recharge our groundwater,” Worthley said.

CFB contributed to this segment.


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