River-flow plan threatens farms

Sierra Sun Times
March 28, 2013

Farmers, political leaders, small business owners and irrigation district officials packed a Sacramento hearing last week to comment on a proposal before the State Water Resources Control Board that they said threatens severe economic and environmental consequences in parts of the northern San Joaquin Valley. The plan would limit diversions from the Stanislaus, Tuolumne and Merced river watersheds with the intent to increase river flows and help boost recovery of fisheries in the San Joaquin River and its tributaries.

The proposal would cut water supplies for the Modesto, Turlock and Merced irrigation districts by an estimated 15 percent to 25 percent a year from February to June, reducing available surface water deliveries to nearly 1 million acres of irrigated farmland.

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