Imperial Valley Press
Researcher proposes changes to address drought
A researcher with a nonprofit organization proposed changes in agriculture in order to address drought and the reduction of allocated Colorado River water.
Carlos de la Parra, a researcher with nonprofit Revive the River Alliance, said the community can launch agricultural projects that produce added value and reduce water consumption to also address climate change.
During the recent Agrobaja Expo held in Mexicali, De la Parra said environmental issues related to the Colorado River began about two decades ago based on the then imminent water shortage.
The alliance is composed by six nonprofit organizations dedicated to restore the ecosystem of the Colorado River delta.
The alliance has helped the community to help restore about 500 hectares where local species of animals have found their natural habitat.
At the same time, the community has reconnected with the area by preserving and monitoring species to protect the ecosystem’s natural wealth.
Given the Colorado River is strongly related to the local economy, “Mexicali’s future depends on it,” De la Parra said.
“What growers and we do is indivisible,” the researcher said.
De la Parra said the nonprofit organization Restore the Colorado he leads has developed abilities to better water management by promoting eco-agriculture that offers alternatives to reconvert harvesting and to apply more efficient irrigation systems to increase productivity.
The researcher considered winter rainfall has not been abundant enough for the river to recover.
De la Parra said this is a consequence of climate change that has led to hotter summers, increased water evaporation and reduced water flow.
“We must improve our water resiliency,” De la Parra said. “We must prepare for less water availability.”
He also said Mexicali must take advantage of its resources — water, sun, land and people.
“The future is not in doubt,” De la Parra said. “We must understand it under the actual conditions.”
– Arturo Bojórquez, firstname.lastname@example.org