Environment

Proposed Ballot Measure Would Force California to Store More Water

Written by T. Logan Dayne

California has had no shortage of droughts in recent years. All this puts a substantial toll on the farmers that work there. Increasing costs to growing crops has never been a good sign but California has doubled down on that strategy in recent years. Despite being the largest producer of food in the U.S., the California government consistently ignores many of the farmers there that live in the rural areas, preferring instead to divert resources to Los Angeles, San Francisco, and trains. A new measure seeks to change this.

The unrest of Central Valley farmers and Southern California desalination supporters are banding together to collect signatures for a new ballot measure, the Water Infrastructure Funding Act of 2022. They need roughly a million signatures to get it on the ballot and currently have 997,132  If approved it would require 2% of California’s funding to be put towards water projects and resources, including dams, reservoirs, desalination plants, and recycled water plants, along with improving the canal and pipe system. The Act would continue to be in place until water supply is increased by a modest 13 percent. This would be of great support to not only farmers and businesses, but other California residents during times of drought, which have become far too common. Spokesperson and co-organizer for More Water Now Edward Ring said, ” You can’t get there any more just with conservation. If you want to be resilient against a prolonged drought, you have to have new supplies.” Ring also said that the polls show that voters would overwhelmingly support a measure like this,  “Voters, as it is right now, very much support spending money on water infrastructure, by 70-80 percent, depending on the polls you look at.”

Supporters of the measure also say that the measure could create new water creation projects such as desalination. The coalition has until April 29th of 2022 to collect the needed signatures and get the measure on the ballot.

Photo Cred: AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli