Sometime around December 15 the US Fish and Wildlife Service will again start monitoring the turbidity, or cloudiness, of water in the Delta. This yearly event is intended to help protect the Delta Smelt that are attracted to this murky water that tends to be more prevalent in the storm season. By federal regulation, if the turbidity rises above certain level water pumped from the Delta is reduced by 60 percent, supposedly to protect the smelt, from taking a wrong turn.
All sides have agreed to accept the levels set by the federal regulation and do their best to plan for it.
But last year, the federal regulators, on a whim not much different than the Grinch looking down from his mountaintop and deciding to steal Christmas from Whoville, arbitrarily restricted the pumps before the federally mandated level was reached.
How is it possible for farms, other businesses, cities and counties to plan if the rules can be thrown out the window with no reason, no explanation and no science to back up the decision?
We hope that this year some sanity prevails and the federal Grinch stays on his mountaintop.