Issues of concern to people who live in the west: property rights, water rights, endangered species, livestock grazing, energy production, wilderness and western agriculture. Plus a few items on western history, western literature and the sport of rodeo... Frank DuBois served as the NM Secretary of Agriculture from 1988 to 2003. DuBois is a former legislative assistant to a U.S. Senator, a Deputy Assistant Secretary of Interior, and is the founder of the DuBois Rodeo Scholarship.
Saturday, February 15, 2014
Obama: US must rethink water as climate changes
Drawing a link between climate change and California's drought, President Barack Obama says the U.S. has to stop thinking of water as a "zero-sum" game and must do a better job of figuring out how to make sure everyone's water needs are satisfied.
On a tour of central California on Friday, Obama warned that weather-related disasters will only get worse.
"We can't think of this simply as a zero-sum game. It can't just be a matter of there's going to be less and less water so I'm going to grab more and more of a shrinking share of water," Obama said after touring part of a farm that is suffering under the state's worst drought in more than 100 years.
"Instead what we have to do is all come together and figure out how we all are going to make sure that agricultural needs, urban needs, industrial needs, environmental and conservation concerns are all addressed," he said.
Even if the U.S. takes immediate action to curb pollution, the planet will keep getting warmer for a long time to come because of greenhouse gases that already have built up, he said.
"We're going to have to stop looking at these disasters as something to wait for," Obama said, announcing more than $160 million in federal financial aid. The sum includes $100 million in the farm bill he signed into law last week for programs that cover the loss of livestock.
The package includes smaller aid amounts for the most extreme drought areas and to help food banks serving families affected by the water shortage. Obama also called on federal facilities in California to begin conserving water immediately.
"These actions will help, but they're just the first step," he said. "We have to be clear. A changing climate means that weather-related disasters like droughts, wildfires, storms, floods, are potentially going to be costlier and they're going to be harsher."
The budget Obama will send Congress next month includes $1 billion for a "climate resilience fund" to invest in research and pay for new technologies to help communities deal with climate change. The proposal is likely to face stiff opposition from lawmakers wary of new spending and divided on global warming...more
For some reason the POTUS didn't mention the Green Drought caused by the ESA and the delta smelt.