Letter: We should plan to protect our water


Being retired interstate truckers, my wife and I have seen much about our nation that few see. The importance of good clean water is becoming more critical than most know.

For years newspaper articles have noted how the massive Ogallala aquifer that feeds the nation’s heartland has been declining. The same is true of California’s supreme breadbasket, the San Joaquin Valley.

All of the Pacific Southwest is primarily dependent on only five reservoirs; Shasta Lake, Oroville Lake, Lake Tahoe, Lake Powell in Arizona, and Lake Mead on the Califirnia-Arizona border. Four of those five have unbelievably dwindled to mere puddles in recent seasons.

Currently my wife is visiting children and grandchildren in these states and staying in the Greater Los Angeles area where laws have now been passed prohibiting lawn watering with in-ground sprinkler systems… that’s no fooling!

That would be “anathema” here. We’ve known lean years when drought threats gave concerns, but nothing like what is happening down south. Recently the Shasta watershed got some rain that is giving bits of hope, but fire seasons have progressively scorched those ideas into ashes. Even we on the western side of our mountains are seeing some drought and wildfire reality that our abundant farmland folk on the east side are being plagued with.

Struggles and outright wars over water rights and availability are endemic in American history. Can we imagine what it will be like when untold millions of southlanders discover that they can’t even flush their toilets anymore?

We’ve been fortunate here to have enough water (without serious flooding) but what will it be like when hoards of our own countrymen start eyeballing our water? God save us then!

The sooner we start thinking about it, the better.

Al and Barbara Williams

Oak Harbor