Billions of Gallons of Water

California is in the midst of one of the worst droughts in history. Yet, Santa Cruz’s reservoir, Loch Lomond, has more water in it than last year, 720 million gallons morewater than last year.

Here is the exciting part. The San Lorenzo River has more water flowing out to sea in the winter than Santa Cruz has the permits to harvest. There is more than enough water to meet the city’s and the fish needs. Here are the things you should know:

  • Santa Cruz uses 3 Billion gallons of water in a normal year.
  • The City of Santa Cruz has identified the community’s need at 900 Million new gallons per year
  • Santa Cruz has permits to harvest 975 million gallons during winter from the San Lorenzo river.
  • Santa Cruz has space in the aquifers to store this water, and the Hansen quarry is for sale. This combination can store the excess water harvested from the San Lorenzo to give us drought protection.
  • Santa Cruz also has a water treatment plan that is capable of handling the extra water needed to protect us from the drought.
  • The costs for the City of Santa Cruz would be the cost of constructing a pipeline 8 miles from Felton up the county road to the back of Loch Lomond and the quarry. The cost is $25,000,000.

This water is easily accessible, this water is sustainable, this water is cheap.

We urge you to contact the city and let them know that you are interested in this solution to our waterproblems.

Please feel free to contact Don Lane, Rosemary Menard, and Mike Rotkin about this plan. They are the people who have the power to put Harvesting the Winter Flows into action.

Don Lane, Santa Cruz mayor:
Rosemary Menard:
WSAC, c/o Mike Rotkin:

Sample Letter

To whom it may concern,

I am a Santa Cruz water customer and a voter. There is discussion right now that will decide the fate ofwater in the Santa Cruz community and I want my voice heard. 

Harvesting the Winter Flows of the San Lorenzo River is a sustainable, cheap and immediate solution to our water problems. We need 900 Million gallons of water to be sustainable in this drought and the San Lorenzo River has more than that. We have the permits for 975 Million gallons, we have the space for thiswater, we have the capacity to purify and clean this water. Please know that as a concerned citizen I am very invested in us accessing this water

I know this water exists and I will support anyone who takes action to access this water. I will not support a desalination plant or other expensive, and environmentally destructive measures to get water that we already have. 

Thank you for your time,


[Your name]

Living at [Your address]