Well done, supes

A moratorium on new well installation in Glenn County puts locals first

The Glenn County Board of Supervisor’s decision to place a temporary moratorium on the drilling of new wells may seem extreme to some folks, but considering the unprecedented nature of the drought and plans by the Glenn County Irrigation District to build five wells designed to pump massive volumes of groundwater, the supervisors made the right call.

The thing is, the groundwater supplies everyone. It’s viewed as a commodity by the district, but it’s a resource first for local residents and farmers. A few weeks ago, this paper attended a meeting hosted by GCID regarding those proposed five wells—a gathering ostensibly for the public to learn more about that plan. However, there was no information presented at the meeting that wasn’t in the district’s draft environmental impact report and the officials present refused to answer questions from members of the public.

That only added to the concerns farmers and residents who live in the area have about how the plan may impact their livelihoods and homes. What the supervisors did was put the best interests of locals first by approving the moratorium. It was the right call. Only when the elected leaders have enough evidence that the aquifer can sustain the region—not just current water users but also those seeking to tap the supply for the first time—should the ban be lifted.