Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 04-07-2015, 10:54 AM   #141
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
ls99's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 4,792
The water shortage is just nature's way of pointing out: too many people in California.
__________________

__________________
There must be moderation in everything, including moderation.
ls99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 04-07-2015, 11:48 AM   #142
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern IL
Posts: 18,288
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelB View Post
Price is a mechanism that works well to optimize the allocation of goods and services among consumers and producers. It is most effective (ability to optimize) when the goods and services have substitutes and alternatives, both for consumers as well as producers, and when it can be freely traded or exchanged.

Water is not a good or service, it’s a resource. There are no producers, only consumers. It has no alternative, without water life cannot exist. ...
I can't agree with most of this at all (or at least the application of it to the water shortage). I think you are really using selective tunnel-vision, and I don't know why.

Oil is a resource. And when the price goes up, people conserve, and look to alternatives.

Quote:
It has no alternative, without water life cannot exist. ...
Obviously, we will use water to support life

There certainly are alternatives to growing water-hungry crops like rice in areas with water shortages. Like the oil conservation above, those alternatives are not always absolute literal, direct alternatives to pouring a liquid in your gas tank - for example, working from home more often or car-pooling more often are alternatives. Maybe CA would move to less water-intensive crops if the price of water was higher? Those crops can be produced in other areas, no one will starve.


So what method would you suggest to conserve water in CA, if not price? Ask 'pretty please' to use less water? Have some bureaucracy with a huge potential for graft and influence from special interests decide who gets what? Something else?

-ERD50
__________________

__________________
ERD50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 12:01 PM   #143
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 13,288
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelB View Post
Price is a mechanism that works well to optimize the allocation of goods and services among consumers and producers. It is most effective (ability to optimize) when the goods and services have substitutes and alternatives, both for consumers as well as producers, and when it can be freely traded or exchanged.

Water is not a good or service, itís a resource. There are no producers, only consumers. It has no alternative, without water life cannot exist. There is no price that can capture the marginal utility of water for a citrus grower, equate it to a car wash, landscaping need, and human sustenance. If that werenít enough, water does not only affect and sustain humans, all other life depends on it as well.

Water is certainly a scarce resource, and it needs to be allocated with care. Economic value is just one criterion, though, and many other factors need to be considered. It is too easy to say "price", because that, in fact, might lead to reduced use by some current consumers, but with no assurance that 1) overall use would decline, 2) the reallocated use represents an improvement for the State of California.

Edit to add - this does not mean users should not be charged. Using and consuming water requires an infrastructure, building and improving it costs money and can benefit and improve overall use. My point is using price as the allocation method.
Saw ERD's response.... but wanted to add....

I did not say that price should be the only criterion... if that were the case then all water would be priced the same (as in ERD's post).... I am saying that the price/use ratio should be changed in order to change the behavior of users....

If it takes 1600 gallons of water to produce one nut, then maybe that nut should not be produced in a place with low water... maybe if the cost of water to produce it was raised to a true market level then the price of that nut will go sky high and people will buy other kinds of nuts or even something else....

When you make a resource cost so little that the user has no incentive to invest money into saving it then you have bad outcomes... look what happened to this lake.... Aral Sea - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia .... it was one of the 4 largest lakes in the world... but not anymore....
__________________
Texas Proud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 12:36 PM   #144
Moderator
rodi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: San Diego
Posts: 8,817
Quote:
Originally Posted by photoguy View Post
I looked back at my water bill for San Jose and I was charged a quantity rate of $2.64 per 748 gallons of water. At our rate of usage it came out to $10/month. I have a hard time seeing how pricing changes would impact residential use given that it is so cheap.
You were getting a bargain.

I looked at our most recent San Diego water bill. We have tiers. For the first tier - which is the first 8. HCF, it's $3.8875. The next tier is $4.3540/HCF.

We used 22 HCF in the last 2 month billing cycle. That is for our home and our rental unit (same water meter). So 6 people (including tenants), large lot, no pool, not much lawn, mostly trees, veggies, and groundcover.

There are higher tiers - but we never get out of tier 2. The prices for tier 3 and tier 4 are as follows:
Tier 1 8.00 HCF @ 3.8963
Tier 2 16.00 HCF @ 4.3638
Tier 3 12.00 HCF @ 6.2342
Tier 4 7.00 HCF @ 8.7657

The drought is a real issue. Arguing over almond trees vs pools and lawns is missing the point. We're looking at significant restrictions and neighbors snitching on neighbors.
__________________
Retired June 2014. No longer an enginerd - now I'm just a nerd.
micro pensions 7%, rental income 18%
rodi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 12:54 PM   #145
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern IL
Posts: 18,288
Atlanta was in the news a few years ago for water shortages.

Anyone know if they put in place an long term conservation measures, or did they just get some rain and the media went on to other things?

-ERD50
__________________
ERD50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 03:33 PM   #146
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
photoguy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 2,301
Quote:
Originally Posted by rodi View Post
There are higher tiers - but we never get out of tier 2. The prices for tier 3 and tier 4 are as follows:
Tier 1 8.00 HCF @ 3.8963
Tier 2 16.00 HCF @ 4.3638
Tier 3 12.00 HCF @ 6.2342
Tier 4 7.00 HCF @ 8.7657
That's really interesting. I doubled checked with San Jose since my number was about 1 year out of date and it looks like the current residential rates are:

0-3 CCF $3.20
4-18 CCF $3.56
>18 CCF $3.91

OR

flat $3.56 per CCF

where CCF = 100 cu feet (=748 gallons). The specific rate plan depends on the meter type (not sure why this is the case).

So San Jose is far more tolerant of heavy water users. And the highest category is basically the cheapest in San Diego.
__________________
photoguy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 03:39 PM   #147
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
NW-Bound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 19,438
Quote:
Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
Does that include natural rainwater?
Yes, it does. Else, the cost of coffee would be way up there.

Coffee is grown mostly in the tropical regions where it rains buckets, or is very hot and humid. Quite often, it is grown in hilly areas where irrigation would be impossible, and very little else could be grown.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andre1969 View Post
Wow...might be time to take a chainsaw to all the walnut trees growing up wild on my property!
No, not if they grow wild and live on just natural rainfall. You are east of the Mississipi. What would you know about the drought anyway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelB View Post
Price is a mechanism that works well to optimize the allocation of goods and services among consumers and producers. It is most effective (ability to optimize) when the goods and services have substitutes and alternatives, both for consumers as well as producers, and when it can be freely traded or exchanged.

Water is not a good or service, it’s a resource. There are no producers, only consumers. It has no alternative, without water life cannot exist...

Edit to add - this does not mean users should not be charged. Using and consuming water requires an infrastructure, building and improving it costs money and can benefit and improve overall use...
True. Hence, when residential water usage is charged, they typically have tiers where the first X cubic feet cost less, because it represents the necessity for life. The extra is assumed used for fancy lush landscape and swimming pools, and is charged at a higher rate.

The tougher problem is in deciding between residential usage vs. agricultural needs. In AZ, there was a debate about water usage by cotton farmers. Many say that cotton is a commodity that is better imported from foreign countries more suitable to grow it. So, lettuce and tomatoes should be grown domestically, but dry goods easily transportable may be better grown elsewhere.

The problem is as EastWestGal pointed out, there are long-time farmers who claim grandfathered rights. I think CA is honoring some of that. When they cut the water for irrigation, the late comers are cut first.

Driving down I-5 between SF and LA, I saw so many orchards being left to dry. It was so sad. I remember back in the late 70s, driving the same interstate, I saw nothing but desert. It is reverting back to that.
__________________
"Old age is the most unexpected of all things that can happen to a man" -- Leon Trotsky
NW-Bound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 05:08 PM   #148
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
clifp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 7,451
A friend posted this on Facebook from the LA Times.

I have to say I was surprised how little water lettuce and tomatoes use, but chickpeas, man they should ban them. Actually I think the market forces would work to help encourage farmers to grow the most sensible crops.


__________________
clifp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 06:34 PM   #149
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 13,288
Quote:
Originally Posted by clifp View Post
A friend posted this on Facebook from the LA Times.

I have to say I was surprised how little water lettuce and tomatoes use, but chickpeas, man they should ban them. Actually I think the market forces would work to help encourage farmers to grow the most sensible crops.



WOW!!!!! This just shocks the heck out of me... So when I eat a 12 ounce steak I am have 'used' 1,275 gallons of water.. I just cannot believe it is that much....

But, the cow has to eat and drink for what... 18 months or so.... I guess it can be that....
__________________
Texas Proud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 06:37 PM   #150
Moderator
Walt34's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Eastern WV Panhandle
Posts: 16,571
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas Proud View Post
But, the cow has to eat and drink for what... 18 months or so.... I guess it can be that....
I'm not sure, but I think they also count the water used to raise the crops that the cow ate to drive the number up to a more impressive level.
__________________
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
Walt34 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 08:06 PM   #151
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern IL
Posts: 18,288
Quote:
Originally Posted by Walt34 View Post
I'm not sure, but I think they also count the water used to raise the crops that the cow ate to drive the number up to a more impressive level.
Right, these are interesting numbers, but they don't seem relevant to water shortages unless we are talking about using water over/above natural rainfall (or diverting that rainfall for crops), and that also depends on the geographic area.

We never irrigated the corn or alfalfa or soybeans we grew. You don't see much in the way of irrigation in the Midwest. Maybe some for table crops, or maybe for crops being raised for seed for next year's crop. If corn doesn't get water at some specific times during pollination and cob development, the yield can go way down - some added water at those times could make a huge difference, and seed crops are much higher value (and smaller overall acreage) than feed crops.

But it does make sense to include the water used on crops to feed the meat we eat - we could just eat the crops.

-ERD50
__________________
ERD50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 08:44 PM   #152
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
NW-Bound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 19,438
Quote:
Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
... But it does make sense to include the water used on crops to feed the meat we eat - we could just eat the crops....
What? No steak? Sous vide veggie?

Seriously, knowing the water usage for food production is crucial to manage this resource more effectively. But why aren't almond and other nut trees not grown east of the Mississippi? Almond trees do not like cold!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ls99 View Post
The water shortage is just nature's way of pointing out: too many people in California.
Californians know that the state is crowded. They have enacted Proposition 13 in 1978 to discourage newcomers. I just looked at a neighborhood in Cerritos in LA County, where I know some people. Two houses of about the same value, one has a property tax of $935, the other $6045. A factor of 6.5X. The difference? Long-time CA resident vs. newcomer.

And then, in new developments, they have Mello-Roos tax in addition. Still, people keep coming.
__________________
"Old age is the most unexpected of all things that can happen to a man" -- Leon Trotsky
NW-Bound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 09:00 PM   #153
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
clifp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 7,451
The LA Times didn't go into detail, but they certainly do include the water used to feed the animal. Since very few animal on modern farm actually graze, it is totally fair to include the water used in providing them with food. On the other hand, I am imagine most California cows, and pigs are fed mostly corn meal, which I suspect is mostly shipped in from the Midwest. So not clear how feeding cows midwest corn is really contributed to CA's drought.

The San Joaquin valley is pretty much desert, so virtually all the crops are irrigated. I remember driving up and down Interstate 5 and US 101 in the late 70s and see tons of rainbird sprinking the crops. I am sure those have all been replaced by drip irrigation systems, but still is down of CA water usage.

Sometime around turn of the century Vegas outlawed any type of landscaping other than desert (catcus and rocks) for new development, there is no reason that Southern California shouldn't have done the same years ago.
__________________
clifp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2015, 04:40 PM   #154
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
NW-Bound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 19,438
Some Californians are now having to skip showers.

When we are traveling in our RV, the small fresh water tank of 35 gal lasts us about 3 days, with one shower each. In our home, we would use 35 gal or more for just one shower if we are not careful. Perhaps more Americans should live in RVs to save water and energy.

Drought May Prompt Californians to Let Personal Hygiene Slide
__________________
"Old age is the most unexpected of all things that can happen to a man" -- Leon Trotsky
NW-Bound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2015, 05:59 PM   #155
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Kerrville,Tx
Posts: 2,726
Not taking a shower does not mean clean there is always the sponge bath I learned how with a broken arm and leg and casts that did not take well to water. You just take a sink and a washcloth and go to town. Or you would see how if you spent time in a Hospital and and incisions that should not get wet.
__________________
meierlde is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2015, 06:16 PM   #156
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
NW-Bound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 19,438
But there's nothing like a good rinse that washes away the grime and sweat. I have found that I can dry-camp with my RV for 4 or 5 days max, then need a full hookup so I can have a longer shower. And that's when it is cold and I do not stink badly.
__________________
"Old age is the most unexpected of all things that can happen to a man" -- Leon Trotsky
NW-Bound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2015, 06:22 PM   #157
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 13,288
Quote:
Originally Posted by meierlde View Post
Not taking a shower does not mean clean there is always the sponge bath I learned how with a broken arm and leg and casts that did not take well to water. You just take a sink and a washcloth and go to town. Or you would see how if you spent time in a Hospital and and incisions that should not get wet.
Quote:
Originally Posted by NW-Bound View Post
But there's nothing like a good rinse that washes away the grime and sweat. I have found that I can dry-camp with my RV for 4 or 5 days max, then need a full hookup so I can have a longer shower. And that's when it is cold and I do not stink badly.

The sponge bath I have heard called a spit bath....

As to having a real shower.... you can do what my mom does... turn the water on... get wet... turn water off... soap up and scrub everything... turn water on and rinse... turn water off... done...
__________________
Texas Proud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2015, 06:32 PM   #158
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
NW-Bound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 19,438
Does your mom's shower take as little as 1 gallon, as some RV'ers claim to be able to do?

I think I use about 2 or 3 gallons for an RV shower, while my wife takes 5 or 6.
__________________
"Old age is the most unexpected of all things that can happen to a man" -- Leon Trotsky
NW-Bound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2015, 06:52 PM   #159
Administrator
Gumby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 10,156
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas Proud View Post
As to having a real shower.... you can do what my mom does... turn the water on... get wet... turn water off... soap up and scrub everything... turn water on and rinse... turn water off... done...
A method that every Navy veteran will recognize. Since we had to distill seawater to get every drop of freshwater onboard, and the reactor and steam plant got first priority on the water, showers had to be as water conserving as possible.
__________________
Living an analog life in the Digital Age.
Gumby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2015, 06:58 PM   #160
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1,495
Quote:
Originally Posted by NW-Bound View Post
Some Californians are now having to skip showers.

When we are traveling in our RV, the small fresh water tank of 35 gal lasts us about 3 days, with one shower each. In our home, we would use 35 gal or more for just one shower if we are not careful. Perhaps more Americans should live in RVs to save water and energy.

Drought May Prompt Californians to Let Personal Hygiene Slide
This is an absolute crock, and typical mainstream media sensationalist reporting. There is still entirely too much water being wasted in CA to have to resort to bad hygiene. There are way too many golf courses, country clubs, and other resorts wasting water on massive green lawns, too many lawns still being watered period, and way too many instances of mindless water waste (this very afternoon I saw water gushing out of a large pipe onto the sidewalk--it wasn't a leak, just water pouring out of a pipe on the side of a building), and way too many hotels using water hoses to wash down an entire city block. Hell, people don't even limit their showers here.
__________________

__________________
Options is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
drought


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
South Texas drought? socca Other topics 26 05-17-2009 11:36 AM
Set it and forget it retirement mugs FIRE and Money 34 03-13-2006 08:09 AM
Dont forget to change the oil in your computer... cute fuzzy bunny Other topics 13 01-11-2006 07:49 PM
Dont forget... cute fuzzy bunny Other topics 9 11-01-2005 02:19 PM
United Airlines wants to just 'Forget' Pension Promise..... Cut-Throat FIRE and Money 87 05-15-2005 11:16 AM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:33 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.