Farming in Callao

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Governor gets rave reviews

Our governor is doing us proud in the way he is standing up for Snake Valley. His stated position has never wavered.

As an opponent of SNWA's water exportation scheme I am in contact with other opponents in several states. The KUED documentary, Desert Wars - Water in the West, sparked a flurry of e-mail messages. Governor Huntsman got rave reviews for his statements. Obviously, Utahns also have given the governor high marks. Here are some of the comments I've received from non-Utahns:

  • I'm impressed with your governor.
  • I wish our governor was more like yours.
  • WOW!
In the recent KUED documentary we saw him again make clear, strong statements. In a KUER interview prior to the documentary's premiere, producer John Howe said Governor Huntsman was the only major politician to consent to being interviewed. (White Pine County, NV, Commissioner Gary Perea was interviewed.) Another guest on the broadcast, historian William Kahrl, gave the governor a rave review and said that the only way to solve water issues in the West is for elected officials to speak openly in addressing them.

Howe asked the governor many more questions than we saw in the documentary. See extended interview for more of Governor Huntsman's interview. Following are a few excerpts.

I stand up strongly for the interests of our ranchers-those who want to protect their way of life and have done so for a hundred years in the western part of our state. The resources are ours ...

I think [the BLM EIS] will result in our all discovering that this big straw concept would in fact draw resources right out of the backyards of people who are trying to make a life for themselves in the western part of Utah.

They [Snake Valley residents] have to know that their state, right up to the very top ... will stand with them and fight for their interests. In fact we as a state have veto authority over any decision that is made.

I'm going to make sure that the interests of our people in the Snake Valley region are protected and that their life-styles are protected before we make any decision that would funnel water into Clark County.

I think if we determine that there is not surplus water to be had then I think that Nevada has to look at some other alternative and they have to go farther in their own states or they have to look at desalinization technology.

we certainly ought to be focused on technologies that will allow us to accommodate that growth and not rip off natural resources that aren't ours.

We need to work on technologies that will allow us to desalinize and maybe draw from some other resource where you find water aplenty...

I suspect fifty years from now we're going to look back on this water war and say, that really was a thing of history because now we have the kind of technology that allows us to accommodate growth in the West.

the protection would be Utah simply saying no! To me that is the ultimate protection that our State has.

we protect their way of life by keeping their water shed or water resources in tact.

They've been working it for generations and they know where the resources are and they know what is theirs and they know how to use it. They know the difficulty in tapping it-good years versus bad years, and I tend to defer to the good judgment of the people of the Snake Valley region to guide my thinking anyway.

I think John Weseley Powell basically called it right after the Civil War when he came traipsing through here in

There has to be a conservation ethic that is instilled in our younger generation so that the idea of consuming three to four hundred gallons per day per person is throttled back to a more "user friendly" level. ... The idea that you can have a massive water fountain in front of every grand hotel in Las Vegas probably has to be re-thought just a little bit with a sense that going forward without technologies for desalinization or some other way, we've got to maintain and even strengthen a conservation ethic.

[about a connection between the southern Utah pipeline project and Snake Valley]: I don't think so unless politicians on a regional basis want to play power politics. ... I see them very much as stand-alone projects.

I don't think there will be any movement at all over the next few years. I think they will be used in support of a study and I think that the study will probably lead to another study and maybe yet another study and that's sometimes the way government decision-making works. Sometimes studies are the decisions. Nobody can quite agree on what to do so another study is launched and it wouldn't surprise me if we found ourselves caught up in endless studies in the next few years and I hope by that point we get serious about some technology that would allow us to better feed, from a water resources standpoint, our burgeoning communities.

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