CALIFORNIA WATER CRISIS – FISHERIES & FARMS BACKGROUNDER
The reduction in water allotments for some agricultural growers in California’s Central Valley has recently been generating national headlines. The story being told focuses on two environmental regulations that are being blamed for the water shortage. Yet left out of the story has been another food harvesting and production industry, and the families that have had their livelihoods collapse.
The commercial and sport fishing industries in California and Oregon, which used to pump billions of dollars into the economy, have been devastated for two years. The Central Valley agricultural story is dramatic when you see a field not planted, but the fishing equivalent is more than 13 MILLION ACRES of ocean that lay fallow because there are no fish to fish. Families that relied on those fish are hurting and coastal communities are struggling.
This is a story worth telling – one that brings a new perspective on the state’s water crisis. Please consider the facts and spokespeople in this backgrounder for the untold story.