by Sarah (Steve) Mosko, PhD
What’s wrong with this picture? Southern California (SoCal) imports about half of its water from northern California and the Colorado River while flagrantly neglecting to put precious local rainfall to use.
This misguided water policy contributes to the now threatened ecosystems of both those distant water sources as well as global climate change via the enormous energy expended in transporting water over such distances.
What’s more, SoCal manages its rainfall through a storm drain system that directly contributes to ocean pollution.
No wonder northern Californians are reputed to be less than enamored with their neighbors to the south.
The heavy downpours which made December 2010 one of the wettest in SoCal history serve as a reminder that, despite being semi-arid, the region’s rainfall is by no means inconsequential and might be put to better use than overwhelming sewer systems and polluting coastal waters.