Grizzle told the Board of Supervisors that TMDLs are being established throughout the state and elsewhere, but what makes them unique in the Imperial Valley is they are being imposed on artificial, manmade waterways.
She said the estimated cost of implementing the first TMDL, silt — with an mandated reduction from 400 milligrams per liter of farm runoff to 200 milligrams per liter — is from $5 to $50 per acre. Silt is the first of 14 TMDLs.
Grizzle told the Board of Supervisors that none of the suggestions made by a technical advisory committee of farmers who worked with regional board staff for 18 months were incorporated into the 300-page TMDL. Further, she said the science used by the regional board to develop the TMDL is 30 years old and comes out of a study conducted in Europe.
Grizzle said the TMDL requires the Imperial Irrigation District to notify the regional board of what crop will be grown on each local parcel of land six months before the crop is actually planted.
The Farm Bureau is seeking a delay of the TMDL's implementation until the environmental studies associated with the IID/San Diego County Water Authority transfer, among others, are completed, Grizzle said.
She said the farming community remains committed to moving forward on the water-quality program, though there might be legal implications in the imposition of the TMDL.
Staff Writer Rudy Yniguez can be reached at 337-3440.