With weather forecasts indicating another dry year, the California State Board of Food and Agriculture is bringing together state and federal officials to discuss drought planning and implementation of the California Water Action Plan. The meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 4, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the California Department of Food and Agriculture, 1220 ‘N’ Street – Main Auditorium, Sacramento, CA 95814.
“The current drought requires unprecedented collaboration between water agencies, state and federal government and the agricultural community to enhance water use efficiency and be prepared to maximize every opportunity for storm water capture,” said CDFA Secretary Karen Ross. “As we enter another difficult water year, all Californians need to do their part to use every drop of this precious resource wisely.”
As a result of the ongoing drought California has lost more than 17,100 seasonal and part-time jobs in the agricultural sector, 428,000 acres (or 5 percent) of irrigated cropland has been fallowed and the statewide economic loss is estimated at $2.2 billion. Out of California’s 12 major reservoirs – eight are at or below 30 percent capacity and all are below historic averages, including the state’s largest reservoirs Shasta Reservoir (24 percent) and Lake Oroville (28 percent). San Luis Reservoir, a critical resource for the Central Valley and Southern California is currently at 20 percent capacity.
“Another drought year will severely impact groundwater supplies which are an important resource for farm families and communities,” said Craig McNamara, president of the California State Board of Food and Agriculture. “As groundwater management moves forward at the local level, farmers and ranchers need to be at the table in helping to reach manageable solutions.”
Invited speakers include: Richard Howitt and Jay Lund, University of California, Davis; Karla Nemeth, California Natural Resources Agency; Gordon Burns, California Environmental Protection Agency; Members of California Water Commission – Joe Del Bosque, Kimberly Delfino and David Orth; Dr. Glenda Humiston, USDA Rural Development; Carlos Suarez, USDA State Conservationist; Jeff Yasui, USDA Risk Management Agency; Jacque Johnson, USDA Farm Service Agency; and Kerry Tucker, Nuffer Smith and Tucker Public Relations.
The California State Board of Food and Agriculture advises the governor and the CDFA secretary on agricultural issues and consumer needs. The state board conducts forums that bring together local, state and federal government officials, agricultural representatives and citizens to discuss current issues of concern to California agriculture.
This meeting will be streamed online at: http://www.cdfa.ca.gov/LiveMediaStream.html
Follow the board on Twitter at: www.twitter.com/Cafood_agboard