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» January 13, 2005 «
A federal judge ruled that Coho salmon in the Klamath River Basin have been illegally listed under the Endangered Species Act as a threatened species. Judge Michael Hogan said the federal government violated the ESA when it failed to consider hatchery fish in its assessment of coho in southern Oregon and northern California rivers. The decision comes too late for farmers and businesses forced into bankruptcy by the government decision to shut off irrigation water to the Klamath Basin in 2001.
The snowpack in the Sierra is above average for this time of year, in fact it's 90 percent of average for April 1 when it is usually deepest. Hydrologists say reservoirs in Southern California are full from the storms. They say there isn't much of a down side to having this much moisture this early in the season. The concerns are if the storms stop coming, or if a warm storm produces rain, which would melt the snow early and create storage problems.
Constant changes in consumer trends will require flexibility among farmers, ranchers and food companies, according to a marketing expert. Supermarket analyst Phil Lempert told the American Farm Bureau annual meeting that growth of Hispanic and Asian populations will influence food demand. He urged farmers to plant crops that will appeal to those customers and meet Americans' interest in healthy, diverse food choices.
Individuals illegally dumping trash in rural Butte County can be fined up to $500 under an ordinance adopted by the Board of Supervisors. The new law also allows the vehicles of the perpetrators to be confiscated. Farmers are often the ones who must pay to clean up the trash dumped on their land, and then pay to dump the debris in landfills. The ordinance was adopted by a unanimous vote of the county supervisors.Top