Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement after the California Assembly passed SB 120, a bill that would protect the Mojave Desert from Cadiz’s harmful water extraction project:
“I want to thank the California Assembly for passing this legislation to protect the Mojave Desert from the Cadiz water extraction project. With just two days left in the legislature’s session, we need the Senate to take immediate action to save California’s iconic desert.
“SB 120 is desperately needed now. The Trump administration has paved the way for Cadiz by eliminating any federal environmental reviews. With the federal safeguards removed, California must step up to strengthen protections for our public lands.
“Cadiz plans to extract an average of 50,000 acre-feet per year, the equivalent of 16 billion gallons of water, over a 50-year period from the desert’s aquifers. An independent scientific analysis by the U.S. Geological Survey and National Park Service found the project would only be sustainable if Cadiz removed 2,000 to 10,000 acre-feet per year, the equivalent of the aquifers’ natural recharge rate.
“Water sustains life in the Mojave Desert. It gives us the unique flora and fauna, from desert tortoises to bighorn sheep, breathtaking wildflower blooms to Joshua trees, that define California’s iconic desert landscape. If the Senate fails to act, everything that makes the Mojave Desert special could be lost.”