The judge has issued a tentative decision in the case. Under CRC Rule 3.1590(b), the tentative decision does not constitute a judgment and is not binding on the court. Pacificans for a Scenic Coast can’t comment until the final judgment is rendered.
Peter Loeb, client representative, Pacificans for a Scenic Coast
Plagued by prolonged drought, California now has only enough water to get it through the next year, according to NASA.
In an op-ed published Thursday by the Los Angeles Times, Jay Famiglietti, a senior water scientist at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California, painted a dire picture of the state's water crisis. California, he writes, has lost around 12 million acre-feet of stored water every year since 2011. In the Sacramento and San Joaquin river basins, the combined water sources of snow, rivers, reservoirs, soil water and groundwater amounted to a volume that was 34 million acre-feet below normal levels in 2014. And there is no relief in sight.
"As our 'wet' season draws to a close, it is clear that the paltry rain and snowfall have done almost nothing to alleviate epic drought conditions. January was the driest in California since record-keeping began in 1895. Groundwater and snowpack levels are at all-time lows," Famiglietti writes. "We're not just up a creek without a paddle in California, we're losing the creek, too."
On Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced that one-third of the monitoring stations in California’s Cascades and Sierra Nevada mountains have recorded the lowest snowpack ever measured.
"Right now the state has only about one year of water supply left in its reservoirs, and our strategic backup supply, groundwater, is rapidly disappearing,” Famiglietti writes.
He criticized Californian officials for their lack of long-term planning for how to cope with this drought, and future droughts, beyond "staying in emergency mode and praying for rain."
Last month, new research by scientists at NASA, Cornell University and Columbia University pointed to a "remarkably drier future" for California and other Western states amid a rapidly changing climate. "Megadroughts," the study's authors wrote, are likely to begin between 2050 and 2099, and could each last between 10 years and several decades.
With that future in mind, Famiglietti says, "immediate mandatory water rationing" should be implemented in the state, accompanied by the swift formation of regulatory agencies to rigorously monitor groundwater and ensure that it is being used in a sustainable way—as opposed to the "excessive and unsustainable" groundwater extraction for agriculture that, he says, is partly responsible for massive groundwater losses that are causing land in the highly irrigated Central Valley to sink by one foot or more every year.
Various local ordinances have curtailed excessive water use for activities like filling fountains and irrigating lawns. But planning for California's "harrowing future" of more and longer droughts "will require major changes in policy and infrastructure that could take decades to identify and act upon," Famiglietti writes. "Today, not tomorrow, is the time to begin." (Newsweek, March 13, 2015)
Irrepressible Pacifica palindromist Alan Wald telegraphs the following news about Pi Day:
Woo-hoo! Trying to decide how you're going to celebrate Pacifica Pi Day (3.14) this year? Be sure to avoid the congested SFO airport and typical math holiday madness caused by too many smarties in the Bay Area. For starters, Pacifica palindrome lovers suggest we check in with Pacifica's fast new zoo director, who announced at her first staff meeting exactly one year ago that she had taken charge of the operation and immediately had ordered an increase in the number of hippos from seven to roughly 22: "I'm atop Op. Pi hippopotami!"
And who could forget the palindrome-loving chef on Pacifica PCT Channel 26, who explained as he prepared an exotic chowder (or distinctive surf-and-turf) recipe to celebrate Pi Day: "I pot cod, nag, and octopi!"
Perhaps the best news of all, Pi Day this year is two digits longer: 3.1415. So as we prepare to celebrate Pi Day, Pacifica palindrome lovers say, when offered a slice of celebration cake: "I prefer pi."
Over the past couple of years, my partner Leslie and I have had to say final farewells to our feline friends Franny and Zoe, tabby cat sisters who kept us company during their relatively long lives (as kittens, above, their ears were enormous!). When it came time to put each one out of her misery from various ailments common to aging cats, we relied on Linda Mar Veterinary Clinic for compassionate care. First Dr. Angelique Cucaro and then Dr. Dana Thistlethwaite helped us make the difficult decision to end the costly tests and treatments, and not needlessly prolong each critter's suffering. At the most wrenching moment, letting go of a devoted pet, the vets empathized and helped us be at peace with the humane alternative: putting down a very sick animal. Sitting in on the procedure (a sedative followed by a lethal injection) was emotional but strangely reassuring. Afterward, seeing how peaceful each cat looked in death, I thought that this might not be such a bad way for a human to die.
A new comment from Dan Underhill was received on the post “City Council's O'Neill & Keener: Public Projects” of the blog Pacifica Riptide:
"I'm ready to hear about what other industry, apart from tourism, you think Pacifica might promote. I'm ready to include that industry in what I encourage the citizenry and the council to push. Yes, we lack funding. We have always lacked funding. The carpetbaggers have always cited this as the reason we need to sell out to the highest bidder. The dreamers who stuck with their principles have got us tunnels instead of a super freeway bypass, and an art center and concert hall instead of an abandoned school, and a regularly scheduled outdoor farmer's market, and a spectacular park where a dangerous stretch of highway once was, and a dog park, and a community garden, and a community theater, and libraries, and a whole alternative school (for those who remember back that far) instead of just one alternative class. All of these contribute both directly and indirectly to the collective wealth of our community in ways which selling out simply could not. Our community needs real economic solutions to real economic problems, and selling out simply lacks the long-term legitimacy required to keep us afloat."