When water is scarce: Ground water is key to easing impact of drought
AuthorRichard E. Howitt
Author AffiliationsR. E. Howitt is Professor, Department of Agricultural Economics, UC Davis.
Hilgardia 45(3):4-9. DOI:10.3733/ca.v045n03p4. May 1991.
In contrast to projections that drought-related farm losses could climb to several billion dollars this year, a UC model predicts actual losses will be $647 million - largely due to the cushioning effect of a projected 70% increase in ground water pumping. The most significant economic impact will be felt in the South San Joaquin Valley, and along the Coast. Consumers will pay $220 million more for produce at the farm gate-an amount that may be magnified two or three times at the retail market.
On page 6, the author and a colleague outline a scenario for ground water banking. They propose incentives to encourage ground water “savings” during wet and normal years — deposits to a “water bank account” which can be withdrawn in droughts
Also in this issue:Water scarcity: The changing California water scene
Well set aside proposal: A scenario for ground water banking
Keeping the valley green: A public policy challenge
Environmental horticulture: “Growth” industry in California
Fall almond pruning has practical advantages, no adverse effects
Imported wasp helps control southern green stink bug
Specific gravity: A better test of first-milk quality
Plastic mulch increases cotton yield, reduces need for preseason irrigation
Fertilizers produce more range forage in drought than normal years
Evaporation pan scheduling: How to reduce water use and maximize yields in greenhouse roses
Imposed drought stress has no long-term effect on established alfalfa
New index measures returns to risk in crop production
Pressures to urbanize reach the Central Valley
Natural enemies of cabbage looper on cotton in the San Joaquin Valley