I own an olive ranch in Templeton. We are a family business; we live on the property with our four children and all run the ranch together. We use our water as responsibly as we can.
My concern is the large Justin development on South El Pomar, and the county allowing them to have very large water reservoirs lined with black plastic to pump out of: Thousands of gallons of water are evaporating.
How can this abuse of our water be allowed? If they can’t get the water output they want, then shouldn’t they plant less? Regulating the size of well casings the county approves could solve the problem at least for now.
Families in my area are losing their wells and don’t have enough money to drill deeper. If my well goes dry, I lose my house, my property and my career.
I have 40 acres next door and was going to plant more olives, but we have decided that would be unfair to our neighbors, so we’ll dry farm it instead.
Others are planting as fast as possible in fear that they might get shut down.
It is a disgrace.