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Editorial: Release the water

Humboldt County supervisors to Fresno judge: Release our water: Board warns of repeated fish kill

Coalition response…Reclamation had more than 400,000 acre-feet of water to use for fishery protection this year and has determined that its necessary to take additional water from other legal uses including protection of endangered species, management of waterfowl, clean power generation, recreation, industry, daily human needs, and, yes, farming. Regarding the question of what the judge’s ruling means for the future, northern California residents should take comfort from a possible decision protecting existing water rights and uses.

What has been missing from the discussion is the fact that current flows under the 2000 Trinity Record of Decision are actually double what they would be this time of year under natural conditions. That water is coming from storage. An unfortunate die-off occurred one time more than a decade ago. No science exists that links diminished water flows in 2002 to the incident. It is irresponsible to cut additional supplies from rightful water users in an experiment to protect non-endangered fish.

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