Sam Hagen’s letter (May 12) deriding columnist Victor Davis Hanson about water is quite beyond “nonsense.”
The amount of water available to California is not a function of its population. The amount of water is finite; population increases exponentially.
It is elementary that the more people there are, the more water will be required. Whether more people come from natural increase or from immigration does not change that. Dr. Hanson is absolutely correct and Mr. Hagen’s statistics are an example of clever irrationality. Comparing population increases by percentages is irrelevant, as a 131% increase from 1900-1920 was a less than 2 million increase, while the 25% increase from 1990 to 2010 was a 7.5 million increase.
It’s people increasing or decreasing that affects water usage, not percentage increase or decrease. In absolute terms, California’s population is, and has been, exploding for a hundred years, from a couple million to nearly 40 million today, while the water supply is not keeping pace.
Intelligent water planning must take into account increasing population, from whatever source. Mr. Hagen is a great spinmeister, and his misguided statistics will fool some of the people all of the time.
Norman Fletcher, Fresno