06:51 PM

Senator Feinstein’s “Make it Rain” CA Drought Bill Passes Senate


Contact: Courtney Sexton, Defenders of Wildlife: csexton@defenders.org; 202-772-0253

Senator Feinstein’s “Make it Rain” CA Drought Bill Passes Senate

SACRAMENTO (May 27, 2014) – Last week the Senate passed a California drought bill that could have devastating impacts on the state’s already-stressed endangered salmon and steelhead, migratory birds and wetlands. The bill overrides critical federal endangered species requirements and legal rulings to allow greater water exports from the Sacramento Delta to benefit powerful industrial agricultural interests.

The following is a statement from Kim Delfino, Director of California Programs, Defenders of Wildlife:

“Environmental protections are not creating the drought in California. We are experiencing a drought because it has not rained and relaxing environmental protections will not make it rain or bring more water to the state.

“Passing this bill does more harm than good, and combined with the even more destructive legislation we’ve seen from the House, it appears that California’s Senators  and extreme Congressional members are determined to use the drought to undermine endangered species protections critical to preventing the extinction of salmon and other fish, rather than developing long-term solutions. We will surely see countless dead fish and migratory birds as this drought continues into the summer and fall. This bill, especially if combined with the House bill, will only add to the body count.

“The current and future impacts of California's drought on all users of water – be they fish, fowl or human – are indeed serious, and that is why our leaders must focus on real sustainable solutions. This environmentally destructive bill and the House bill are hardly sustainable solutions.”


Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With more than 1.1 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife heritage for generations to come. For more information, visit www.defenders.org and follow us on Twitter @DefendersNews.