Tell lawmakers to reform California’s inequitable water system and stand up to powerful entrenched interests.
European immigrants who settled in California in the late 1800s and early 1900s used genocide, land seizures, and political manipulation to systematically exclude Native Americans, African Americans, Asians, and other people of color from claiming and owning water rights. Today, agricultural businesses whose rights flow from those European immigrants are considered “senior” water rights holders. That means their industrial farms are privileged with first dibs on our scarce water resources at dramatically reduced rates due to their historical precedent.
Industrial farms with inherited water rights receive six times the amount of water used by the City of Los Angeles while paying close to nothing.
Our state leaders cannot continue to allow unsustainable agricultural businesses, who gained their preferential status as a result of California’s violent and racist history, to have the highest priority for and to pay far less for water from our rivers to irrigate their farms than almost every California resident pays for water to drink.
Tell lawmakers to reform California’s inequitable water system and stand up to powerful entrenched big agriculture interests.