Thursday, July 31, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Sun and sea could be our salvation

By
From page A8 | February 27, 2014 |

By Marvin Goldman

All the talk about our drought brings something up that we have yet to face. Yes, all the water conservation measures are important and we should rapidly implement them. But what are we conserving? Simply put, we are conserving Sierra snowpack.

California has always relied on the snowpack for most of its water. The annual winter mountain snow slowly recharges our underground aquifers as well as feeding our rivers and streams; snow is our main source of both ground and surface waters.

Unfortunately, our best science tells us that in the long run we will see less average snowpack in the years to come. Of course, there will be wetter and drier years, but the fact is that our part of the continent is slowly drying and even with draconian conservation measures, we are in for severe desertification.
I’ve recently been reviewing a fascinating and promising option in which we harness two things we do have in great supply — our long seacoast and our sunny climate. Although in its infancy globally, solar-powered ocean desalination is a proven technology — albeit a bit costly at this time — that can take advantage of these two components. Concentrated solar heat boils sea water and the resultant steam is condensed and is a source of pure water.

I’m not saying anything others haven’t said (more eloquently), but what I am saying is that it is time for the state to address the water issues of future decades, and not just this three-year drought. The development of a West Coast solar desalination industry can offer economy of scale, lowered costs, opportunities to stimulate greater innovation, and the promise of a reliable adequate water supply for our next generations. That makes more sense to me than mile-long tank trains bringing us East Coast surface water.
Perhaps instead of pumping shrinking flows of Sacramento River south under San Francisco Bay, why not pump Bay seawater south to massive desalination plants? At least let’s talk about it.
The politics of this issue have already filled many books and I wish I knew how to get everyone on board. I recently suggested that having a carbon tax might help in slowing climate change, but the word “tax” is a big red flag to some and a pie in the sky to others. If I now suggest a water tax, the red flags could become even larger.

However, since the long-term future of our state depends on having enough water, how do we convince the population and our elected officials that the time to wring our hands is past, and that the time for intelligent, long-range action is upon us? Let’s go!
— Marvin Goldman of Davis is a professor emeritus at UC Davis.

Comments

comments

Special to The Enterprise

.

News

 
Local therapists bring ‘Daring Greatly’ movement to Davis

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Davis area youths learn wilderness survival skills

By Charlotte Orr | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Crews battle grass fire near Davis

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

Sorting out the claims after pipe break: Who pays?

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Governor says immigration solution is a priority

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

Firefighters keep Yosemite blaze far from sequoias

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Police nab three for vehicle theft

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

 
As farmland subsides, aquifer worries mount

By San Francisco Chronicle | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Pogledich named Yolo County counsel

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Tuleyome launches Kickstarter campaign to publish a children’s nature book

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5 | Gallery

 
Davis teen on California team for national horticulture competition

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Truth and authenticity on radio program

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

 
Senior sing-along held monthly

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

.

Forum

A rose by any other name

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
Civilians are innocent victims

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

Thanks for your kindnesses

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
Questions, questions, questions

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

Speak out

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A6

 
Ross Douthat: Democrat, Republican patterns are changing

By New York Times News Service | From Page: A6

Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A6

 
.

Sports

River Cats snap three-game losing streak

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Davis Water Polo U10 girls are golden

By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1, 1 Comment

Aggie Silva mixed school and strikes; wins Reno tourney

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Lucky No. 7: Giants snap losing streak

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Davis Rugby teams wrap up summer season

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

 
DHS tryout schedule updated; physical packets due

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

49ers WR Brandon Lloyd enjoying return to NFL

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Hammel struggles in A’s loss to Astros

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

.

Features

Happy 103rd birthday!

By Wayne Tilcock | From Page: A2

 
Fay Libet: 100 years young

By Spencer Ault | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Future subscriber: Sonya Theresa Arnold

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Wedding: Alpers – Halprin Jackson

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

Engagement: Snyder-Oerman

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
.

Arts

Hot City heats up Winters gazebo

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
Enjoy some Mischief at First Saturday event

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

British organist to play in Davis

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
Native American dancers to perform in Davis

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

Winters stages ‘All’s Well That Ends Well’

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
Landscape exhibition returns to Davis

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

Hear live music at Monticello

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
New KDRT show features touring musicians

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Comics: Thursday, July 31, 2014

By Creator | From Page: B6