There is a massive drought that is killing crops, running harvests, and destroying people's livelihoods.
|The drought from space. Click to enlarge. From National Journal|
Working backwards from recent follies to first decisions, today's environmentalist movement has major blame in the drought. The valley has a complex water infrastructure system dating back to the 1960s designed to withstand years of drought while keeping farming production at optimum levels. However, since the 1990s and 2000s, environmentalists in government and judges have ordered water meant for the agricultural system be diverted to projects like keeping endangered species protected.
In 2009 farmers, conservatives, and even environmentalist-friendly Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger tried to warn that current policies were setting up the valley for failure. The show, The Valley Hope Forgot, seemed conservative-alarmist in 2009 but seems prophetic now.
While farmers and conservatives do point out the recent causes of the drought, they ignore the longer term "ticking clock" that conservationists have been warning about for even longer.
Next post: Part 2 - The Conservationists' Warning