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Rights to California surface water far greater than average runoff
Rights to California surface water far greater than average runoff

California over the last century has issued water rights that amount to roughly five times the state’s average annual runoff, according to new research that underscores a chronic imbalance between supply and demand. That there are more rights than water in most years is not news. But UC researchers say their study is the most comprehensive review to date of the enormous gap between natural surface flows and allocations. Of 27 major California rivers, rights on 16 of them exceed natural runoff. Among the most over-allocated are the San Joaquin, Kern and Stanislaus rivers in the San Joaquin Valley and the Santa Ynez River in Southern California. In theory, that difference is not...

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