Pacific Swell

Southern California environment news and trends

California Drought News: Wildfire, groundwater, and the return of the Chipotle burrito

79545 full
79545 full

Friday's news really doesn't understand how the city of Portland can just flush 38 million gallons of water. That's a lot of water to let go down the drain, especially with fire season around the corner.

  • A potentially devastating wildfire season is, "deepening and locking into place across much of the far West, Southwest and Southern Plains," writes Andrew Freeman. (Mashable)
  • Cal Fire has hired nearly 100 seasonal firefighters for the north and middle part of the state. (Think Progress)

I haven't been reading enough personal profiles of water use around the state. I liked this one:

  • In Hanford, one organic farmer already saves water and is looking to save more. By using wood chip mulch, she says she's using a third less water. She's still worried about sustainability, groundwater, and the money earmarked for high-speed rail. (Hanford Sentinel)
[S]he’s got an eye on the need for more surface water to recharge the groundwater table. Because of her size, she doesn’t suck much out of the ground relative to her bigger farming neighbors. But as they furiously pump out groundwater, her well is going to fall. [...] “We don’t need a train,” Williams said, referring to the high-speed rail project. “We need water storage, really. A huge amount of the nation’s food [is affected].”

Groundwater's on a lot of people's minds.

  • Two choices for getting through the drought: storing water, or saving it. Conservation, we got. Storage, in progress. (Pasadena Weekly)
  • Groundwater's the next big fight, says State Senator Fran Pavley, who has told her constituents that she's going to get into it. (The Coast News)
  • Congressman Mike Thompson opines that "Real people, not just fish, are harmed when these environmental regulations are relaxed and water is pumped south out of the delta — and no one benefits." (SF Gate)
  • Food from the California Department of Social Services starts hitting the shelves of food banks and local pantries in 24 drought-affected counties in May. (Central Valley Business Times)
  • Santa Cruz and Monterey depend heavily on the San Lorenzo and Carmel Rivers for their supplies. An editorial for central coast readers suggests that nothing be left off the table when it comes to future solutions - that means dams and desalination should be on the table. (Santa Cruz Sentinel)
  • And the Chipotle burrito returns! Like the swallows to Capistrano. Probably because the company's numbers are out. Chipotle is booming, but it says profit growth has leveled out thanks to meat, cheese and avocados. This is a great way for a company to get free press on a quarterly basis. And raise the price of a burrito by a quarter or two. (Quartz)

Seriously, tell me the last time you got a Chipotle burrito, and whether it would still be worth it if it cost a quarter more, in the comments. Or just go ahead and have a good weekend.

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