On Thursday, Donald Trump went on a bizarre rant during an interview with Fox News. During the interview, Trump alleged that California would soon be rationing its water supply because it had directed “millions of gallons” of water to the Pacific Ocean to help “tiny fish.”
Trump, who often had difficulty speaking during the interview with Fox’s Sean Hannity, went on to claim that a victory by his political rival Joe Biden would turn the United States into a “ninth world country.”
When Trump was asked about the Green New Deal that is being touted by Democrats he responded with, “California is going to have to ration water. You know why?
Trump continued, “Because they send millions of gallons of water out to sea, out to the Pacific, because they want to take care of certain little tiny fish that aren’t doing very well without water, to be honest with you. But it’s a very sad thing that’s happening.”
Trump then moved on to ridicule Democrats in California, especially Gov. Gavin Newsome, for their conservation policies that reroute water to the San Francisco Bay to protect wildlife, especially an endangered species of native fish called a delta smelt.
The fish was nearing extinction in 2015 because of the drought that lasted from 2011 to 2017.
The Trump administration moved to roll back protections of the smelt and have water redirected to farmers, who at the time were among his biggest supporters within the state.
It has been reported that 1.4 trillion gallons of water have been pumped into the San Francisco Bay since 2008 to help save the smelt fish.
In 2016, while Trump was a presidential candidate he stated that California never suffered a drought and that policies that redirected water “out to sea” were what was harming farmers.
California’s problems sprout from the limited amount of water in post-drought California. In 2014, researchers estimated that 63 trillion gallons of groundwater were lost in the western United States from 2013 to 2014.
Hannity asked what a Green New Deal would look like under Joe Biden, whose environmental proposals do not directly endorse the Green New Deal – which proposes strict measures to combat the climate crisis.
“Biden agreed to this with Crazy Bernie,” Trump said. The Democrat’s climate change plan describes the Green New Deal as a “crucial framework for meeting the climate challenges we face.”
Biden reiterated during the first televised presidential debate with Trump that he does not support the Green New Deal, saying “No, I don’t support the Green New Deal.”
“The Biden plan that I put forward…which is different,” he added.
Trump also said back on Feb. 19, 2020: “Now that they’re rationing water for people, they’re saying you’re going to get, very shortly — I heard the governor saying you get 50 gallons. Fifty gallons sounds okay. People tell me it’s like nothing. By the time you do with your showers, and your hands, and your tissues, and everything, 50 gallons is very, very little.”
The goal is to encourage water conservation behavior by setting a water use target that spans the water supplier’s entire service area.
If the suppliers exceeds the use objective, then there could be fines between $1,000 and $10,000 per day, depending on if there are normal conditions or drought emergencies.
Trump also says that California will have a limit of 50 gallons of water use daily “very shortly”, which is wrong. The 2018 legislation sets the per capita residential water use target at 55 gallons and will no go into effect until 2023.
Starting in 2025, the usage target will decrease to 52.5 gallons daily, followed by 50 gallons of use in 2030.
Remember, these are water use targets for the agencies to hit as a community, not limits placed on individual households. Some households may use more and some may use less.