How agricultural drainage is polluted.Todd Trump's chronicles chart how agricultural drainage is contaminated.The Chronicle's internal government memo from Todd trblane shows that the federal government wants to spend billions of dollars to solve one of the toughest pollution problems in the San Joaquin Valley.This policy is expected to be confirmed in February.16 announced the target for decades-The old dilemma of some poisonous water discharged from the West Valley Farm--Since the problem was first discovered in the Kesterson National Wildlife Sanctuary in its 1980 s, pollution has caused the deformity and death of thousands of birds.The new policies outlined in the memorandum include :--Pay farmers potentially hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer money, who will take about 194,000 acres of farmland from their production.--Some farm drains are treated with expensive techniques to remove selenium, an element that naturally exists in the soil of the western San Joaquin Valley, which can poison wildlife and pose a danger to humans.--Build over 2,000 acres of artificial ponds in the valley and collect drainage until the water evaporates.Officials of the United StatesS.The agency that developed the federal water policy-the Bureau of Reclamation declined to make specific comments on the memorandum, which was prepared by an agency staff member and verified by several sources familiar with the negotiations.For fear of retaliation from the employer, no staff member wanted to be named by the Chronicle.Some experts who have seen the memo say the plan could cost as much as $2 billion, much more expensive than previous proposals, possibly equivalent to just a few hundred farmers spending.Many experts monitoring water in California say the memo is very different from previous proposals."The madness of the program goes against the common sense of economics, science and simplicity," said Tom Stockley, director of the California Water Impact Network advocacy group."It is clear that this option is not going to work and taxpayers will eventually pay for it.Shopely and other activists prefer earlier suggestions that absorb more seleniumFarmland produced.Drainage from the western San Joaquin Valley farm has been a problem for many years.Growers there use saline irrigation imported from SacramentoSan Joaquin River Delta and delivered through the canal-and-pump system.The federal government subsidizes the water through long-termWater contract termOver time, salt was piled up on the land and farmers washed away with extra water.This takes away most of the concentrated salt, but also removes a large amount of selenium that naturally exists in the soil.At a high enough level, selenium can poison fish, wildlife and humans.In order to solve the problem of drainage treatment, the reclamation area began to build the St. Louis drainage system in 1968, so that the polluted water will flow into the Delta.Due to high costs and increasing awareness of the risk of selenium, it was discontinued in 1975.In the 1980 s, wildlife officials discovered selenium.Contaminated drainage at the Kesterson National Wildlife Refuge caused birth deformity and death of thousands of birds, and some contaminated water was sent there.The St. Louis sewer has not been completed.So in 1995, Westlands water-It covers an area of 600,000 acres and is the largest water in the country, representing hundreds of farmers.-Sue the federal government for a solution to the drainwater disposal.On 2000, the Federal Court of Appeal ordered the bureau to resolve the issue.Recently, it appears that the Bureau of Reclamation is prepared to pay for the permanent retirement of farmers for about 308,000 acres of farmland and to build a large pond system to collect the remaining runoff water.The plan could cost more than $0.3 billion for evaporation pools and compensation for farmers' crop losses;Maybe $0.9 billion.-$3,000 per acre-Land that will be paid for retirement.However, according to an internal memo from the government, the agency is now leaning towards a more expensive plan ---A price that could be between $50 and $3 billionyear-period.This new plan will retire only 194,000 acres of farmland, build more evaporation pools and use reverse osmosis water.Treatment techniques that help to remove selenium from drainage.In the end, any agreement to resolve the Westland lawsuit must be approved by a federal judge, and Congress must also agree to pay the fee.Jeff McCracken, spokesman for the reclamation bureau--He declined to disclose plans that the agency now supports.-No change in policy will be confirmed.But he said the agency has the right to change its policy on selenium."We do have a legal right to choose any alternative within the legal scope of environmental research," McCracken said ."."It is not unique to go from one preferred alternative to another that is in everyone's interest."In general, affected farmers want to retire less land than the Greens, and the best solution to the selenium problem, the Greens say, is to have as many retired land as possible.Stockley said the new plan for the land reclamation bureau will only exacerbate the problem of selenium."This problem is easy to solve.Less irrigation, less drainage ."Stockley said the bureau's new plan could also allow irrigation workers to retain land and the federal subsidized water distribution they promised.The so-Land known as "retirement" can be watered with groundwater, he said."Basically, the public will pay billions of dollars for something worse than nothing.There will be fewer choices to solve the problem of selenium and less control over public water ."Testing in the United StatesS.Fish and Wildlife Services show that reverse osmosis treatment is not good enough to solve the problem.Joe Skorupa, a biologist at the agency and an expert on the effects of selenium on wildlife, said there are only two ways to solve pollution: less irrigation of land, or somehow discharge the drainage safely from the valley."Everything else is the act of delaying time," he said .""Basically, the less water you put on the land, the less pollution you run out of the bottom.Skorupa also questioned the proposed pond for collecting seleniumPollute the water and let it evaporate.The pond is a magnet for birds, he said."Everything is equal, the less the evaporation pool, the better," he said .".Sarah Wolff, a spokeswoman for Westland District, confirmed that farmers in the area have been discussing litigation solutions with the Bureau of Agriculture and reclamation, but she will not give details.She also rejected the Chronicle's request to talk to farmers about the issue."We don't believe that any of the drainage schemes that are being considered will really solve the problem," said Woolf ."."Each of them has some problems."Wolff says she doesn't know anything about another aspect of the government memo: The proposed transfer of the St. Louis ReservoirThe reservoir, jointly owned by the state and federal governments, leads to the West Valley waters.The Los Banos-Regional reservoirs are now serving farmers, municipalities in Southern California and some cities in Santa Clara County.Such a transfer will give farmers more control at what time.-and how much --The water was released.Carl Tomson, director of operations and management of the state water conservancy project of the California Ministry of Water Resources, said his agency supported efforts to solve the San Joaquin Valley drainage problem.But it's too early to discuss the details, Torgersen said.-Including the future of the St. Louis reservoir.But Karen Schambach, director of public employees in charge of environmental responsibility in California, said that the transfer of the reservoir should not be considered."It is very inappropriate to discuss how to allocate public resources to private parties," Schambach said ."."Who is thinking about the public in this matter?"No matter how the bureau works, the review of the New Democratic Party Congress may be strict.Rep.Grace Napolitano, D-Norwalk (Los Angeles County), who is expected to take over the House Water and Power Subcommittee, said she is seriously concerned about selenium pollution and threats to wildlife and drinking water."In the past, I had a lot of differences with the land reclamation bureau," Napolitano said ."."We may have to hold hearings on the current situation."The water flowing from the western San Joaquin Valley farm is absorbing selenium, an element that is toxic to fish, wildlife and humans.1.Irrigation water is used on farmland in the western part of San Joaquin Valley, an area with high selenium contentrich soils.2.The salt in the irrigation water is concentrated around the root zone of the plant.3.In order to remove the concentrated salt and maintain the production of the land, farmers wash their land with more water.4.Water drained from the ground absorbs selenium from the soil and salt.High levels of selenium are toxic to wildlife, especially birds.