Saturday, August 29, 2009

A Green Opportunigy - Adaptive Governance

Thanks to Alex for posting the link to Timothy Brink's OpEd in the LA Times. Unfortunately by the time I went there, the note indicated that comments were closed... and there were none to read.

I found one problem with Brink's OpEd. The call to action could be applied to any of the various bills in the California state legislature dealing with Water. The objectives are OK but there are no specifics. So, if you follow the jump, I will give a hint of something that is going on regarding water, the Delta and how it is governed.

To start with, the question of governance is critical to sensible action. The last time we tried to deal with governance, the result was a Cal-FED bureaucracy that lacked the authority, moral or legal, to do anything but it was yet another "compromise" crafted by Sen. Feinstein and so people gave way while it failed.

Right now, the Little Hoover Commission has a committee working on Water Governance. The most recent session was on August 18 and I quote from the meeting notice:
Water rights experts representing state agencies, water conveyors and users, environmental organizations and other areas will discuss the history and current issues within California water rights permitting processes.
They have looked at more than just what has historically been done in California. Presenters to the commission have presented the Utah Model and the Arizona Model. I am not sure what they are, since the presentations are not posted to the public.

So, today, I sent a note to Stuart Drown, the Exec. Dir. of the Commission. In it, I suggested the California Green, Martin Zehr had experience in helping to develop a new model of water governance in New Mexico and asked how we could get that before the commission. (Reminder to self... call the commission on Monday.)

Paul Seeger of the Delta Greens has been looking for a speaker at a meeting on the Delta that he is organizing for Aug. 30. We have tried a number of different tacks, but I think that Martin will be giving a talk on his experience and the idea of Adaptive Governance for water.

Martin cites Adaptive Governance and Water Conflict by John T. Scholz as a source. That should be well worth reading, because the outline of Martin's proposed talk is dynamite. (A comment both on quality and hoped for effect.)

After Martin finalizes the presentation, I will get it posted. I would hope that Paul gets the word out to a wider audience. We need to have more Greens show up and support Paul, and Martin.

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