March 2010- Water Worries Continue

Smiles on the faces of farmers throughout California were evident in January and February as a good deal of rain came down upon the Golden State, which was a good start in making a dent in the well-below normal levels in most of the reservoirs. But it’s only a start.

Dan Nelson, general manager of the San Luis Delta-Mendota Authority, said that while the above average rainfall and snow pack was definitely a welcome sight, two more months of well above average precipitation is needed to bring the reservoirs – especially Shasta and Folsom – to even close to average levels. Speaking on February 10, he said, “When the first water allocation projection for ag contractors is made next week, we still expect it to be at zero.”

He added that it was “too early” to predict what the final allocation will be, but he did allow that the current weather patterns are favorable, and directed the conversation about water projections to Tom Boardman, water resource engineer for the authority. Boardman also predicted that the first allocation, which he thought would be released around Feb. 20, will be zero percent for ag contractors, but he added “we are getting close to a projection of greater than that. It could come in March.”

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