ICYMI 1/21/21: California’s Looming Water Crisis

…and commentary from Restore the Delta

Water crisis looms as California households struggle to pay bills, suppliers lose revenue – San Francisco Chronicle 1/20/21
“Unpaid water bills are piling up across California as the pandemic continues to rage, leaving water agencies out hundreds of millions of dollars and nearly 1 in 8 families with rising debt — and worse, a possible water shut-off…
“The financial hardship is even worse in parts of the Central Valley and Southern California. A statewide moratorium on service shut-offs, put in place indefinitely by Gov. Gavin Newsom in April, protects many residents from losing water for not making payments. But some water agencies are reporting that revenue shortfalls are threatening their bottom line and could soon disrupt operations..”
Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Executive Director, Restore the Delta:
“The report from the SWRCB shows us that the greatest number of households that cannot afford to pay their water bills are in Southern California and the Central Valley—the areas that are supposed to be served by and pay for the Delta tunnel.
“With 1 billion dollars in household water debt, and a number of water districts needing eventual bailouts, nobody can afford the tunnel. To continue pursuing it during the pandemic is ludicrous.
“There are a number of better solutions for water supply reliability, that will create jobs, and that will prepare California for extended droughts. The broader environmental community has shared these ideas with the Newsom administration repeatedly. It is time for his administration to start listening.”

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