Agribusiness focuses on drought, not climate change

Arizona Capitol Times

You will never hear the words “water crisis” said aloud in the in the chambers of the Arizona Legislature, Salt River Project, or Central Arizona Project. The fact the reservoirs on the Colorado River, which store irrigation water for our farms, have hit their lowest levels has not prompted our state’s Department of Agriculture, nor Farm Bureau to say the word “crisis” in public.

Just five years ago, the Arizona Director of Agriculture Mark Killian put into print these words: “I would not agree that water rationing is imminent in Arizona. … Fifteen years of consecutive drought conditions affect us, but I’m still optimistic.”

Whether the state’s greatest irrigation agriculture booster was justifiably optimistic or not, a profound reduction in Colorado River water usually allocated to irrigating Arizona’s crops IS now imminent. This Tier 1 shortage will result in a dramatic cut to Arizona’s share of the…