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tv   President Obama Statement on Guantanamo Bay Closure  CSPAN  February 23, 2016 8:01pm-8:20pm EST

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bocelli expressed concern for war victims and identifying it as a major problem. but then it was interesting. there is thatated small hateful word as hubris that the greeks used to define pride and the arrow gans. that word conjures a theme that we've seen in justice scalia's work. justice scalia went about his task of considering significant constitutional and legal issues of the day with a profound and seldom seen humility about the role of courts in our country. they are not there to impose their own beliefs on the people but to adjudicate competing claims in the context of a constitution that has enduring
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meaning. to interpret the law in any other way otherwise ingran dieses power to a select few, a power that was never intended by the founders. this humility of position that justice scalia had, i believe -- had, i believe -- had i believe will be a lasting legacy. whether one believes -- agrees with justice scalia from a policy perspective, his writings reflect a profound respect for an understanding of our system of government and an unparalleled respect for an interpretation of the constitution grounded in text and in history. for this our nation should be forever grateful. may he rest in peace. yield back. >> i thank the gentleman and thank all of my colleagues for their comments. mr. speaker, i really appreciate this opportunity for all of our colleagues to join us in celebrating the life of this great man, justice scalia,
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who so many of us were privileged to know. mrs. comstock: and count as a friend. for anyone who would like to view the beautiful mass of christian burial for justice scalia that was presided over by his son, father paul scalia, who gave a beautiful homly, that can be found on c-span and i appreciate that was covered. and also again appreciate this opportunity to celebrate this beautiful life, this family, and i thank you and with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the gentleman from california, mr. garamendi, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader. mr. garamendi: thank you, mr. speaker.
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i appreciate the earlier discussion about one of america's most longstanding and most noted justices, his passing is mourned by all of us. i do however today want to move to a different subject. i want to talk about, i think, one of the two most essential things that a human being needs to live. and that's water and air. but today we're going to take the former of those two subjects and really talk about water. wo weeks ago i put this up for all to see, this is tap water from flint, michigan. there's been a lot of discussion over the last month, month and a half, almost three months now, about flint, michigan, about the water supply in flint, michigan, lead in the pipes, lead pipes, about the public health emergency that exists there and about what we could and should do
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about dealing with flint, michigan. however, flint, michigan, is ot unique. this is how they get water in east porterville, in the central valley of california, the san joaquin valley, just south of fresno, california. the water supplies in the east portererville area ran dry and -- porterville area ran dry, in part because of the drought, in part because of inadequate water systems. so the residents of east porterville were required to get water from a cattle water trough. pretty much like i have on my ranch, although hopefully thwart's a whole lot cleaner -- thwart's a whole lot cleaner -- this water's a hole lot cleaner. now we have another example. one from the midwest. another from the far west. any other problems? about water supply?
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well, yes. there are other problems about water supply. this is a list of problems that we know exist in the united states or most recently existed. flint, michigan, we just saw that picture. toledo, ohio. you remember they had to shut down the water system because of problems from algae blooms. baltimore, maryland. brick township, new jersey. oh, washington, d.c. lead release. wayne county, north carolina, greenville, north carolina, lake hurst acres, maine, chicago, illinois. i decided not to put them all up there because it would take the rest of the evening to list all the communities in america that have water issues. certainly we do in california. i could put up another -- well, maybe i will. let me just put up a map of california. this is the largest population
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in the united states. approaching 40 million. -- million people. and far north, pacific coast, san francisco bay, los angeles down here, santa barbara, and way down here, san diego and somewhere over here arizona and nevada. serra, nevada, mountains, the coastal range and the great central valley of california, where a whole lot of america's food and food exports come from. down here in the lake basin, there's well over 100 communities who have contaminated water. from nitrates and other harmful substances. so the issue of clean water, you know, shortage of water down here and contaminated wells up and down -- oh, the valley. monterey bay. many, many of the wells in that area are also contaminated. so we've got a water quality problem really throughout the
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united states and we certainly have one in california. we have another problem in california. et me put this up. a little different map. the previous map, that one, nice and green. no. that's not california today. we may and probably are in the fifth year of the great california drought. and this is a picture of california drought -- the california drought situation. the yellow is a little less than normal. the red, more less than normal. this brown is really the way california will be as soon as this summer comes on. and that is called exceptional drought. so the great central valley of california, the coastal range down into los angeles and even over the east side of the
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sierras, an exceptional drought. and so the green california is really not so green. today we are about halfway through the rainy season in california and the current rain for the entire state is about 75% of normal. and that's why you see this extreme drought occurring, even as of february 18, 2016. the sierra snowpack is less than normal, but still a whole lot better than the last year. when it was zero. as in no snow. so what are we going to do? need to do something, otherwise we're going to have a whole lot more pain in california. so what senator feinstein and i have been doing over the last several months is trying to
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develop a solution for the immediate drought, to make the most of the water that is available, while still protecting the endangered species, the great salmon runs of the central valley of california, and the coastal rivers, as well as the species of live in the delta california. so we've been working, trying to put together a piece of legislation that would provide as much flexibility as possible while still protecting the fish species and the floora and fawna of the state -- flora and fawna of the state. we think we've done. it we think we do have a piece of legislation that will do that understand we call that the -- we've done it. we think we do have a piece of legislation that will do that and we call that the operational part of the legislation. we can have a statement from the house of representatives about how we can solve the
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drought problemle with, not solve it -- problem, well, not solve it, do the very best we can in an extreme circumstance, to deliver as much water as possible to the farms and the cities of all of california. while also protecting the endangered species. let me just put this up. this is the essence of the legislation. i'm going to start here at the bottom and work towards the top. this is the short-term provision of the bill. and i'll go into this in more detail in a few moments. the bill also has what we call long-term infrastructure needs. and those long-term infrastructure needs are storage reservoirs, aquifers, beneath the surface of the earth, where we have ground water, or we used to have ground water. surface storage, there are
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several new and expanded reservoir opportunities available in the state. some of them on the streams and rivers and of course those will be controversial. and one or two that are off stream, in the mountains, in the valleys and the mountains where there are no active rivers. those being somewhat less controversial. so there's surface storage, there's underground aquifer storage and that's this one right here. authorized $600 million for water storage projects. both aquifer as well as surface storage. we also have this thing called conservation. conservation is where you can get the most water. for every gallon of water that you conserve, that's a gallon of water that would be available for other purposes or to extend what little you have available. so, conservation plays a major role and in this legislation there is money for conservation.
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this also -- there's also money for this recycling. now, much of the midwest recycles water. in fact, the entire mississippi river system is recycled water. water that's used upstream by some city, cleaned, put back in the river, reused again as it flows down the mississippi river, and its tributaries. california doesn't do much recycling. i don't have a map here of the -- no, i don't. but if one were to take a look at the whole pacific coast of california and the united states and alaska and central america and south america, so from alaska all the way south to chile on the west coast, the pacific coast of the western hemisphere, you would find that the fifth biggest river in all of that vast stretch, the great rivers of alaska and canada, the sacramento river, the colorado river down here, and
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the rivers of central and south america, the fifth biggest and s to be right here here and here. the fifth biggest river are the sanitation plants of california that take water from up and down the entire area and from the colorado all the way from the rockies, use it, clean it to a higher standard than the day it arrives in the great citiesful california -- cities of california, clean it to a higher standard, and then they dump it into the ocean. this is utter foolishness. and so in the garamendi-feinstein legislation, we have $200 million for water recycling. so that we can recycle that water and reuse it. and make use of water that's already available. we know, for example, that in los angeles there is approximately a million acre
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feet of water in los angeles that's not now being used. in fact, it is being dumped into the ocean. and with this recycling program , a million acre feet of new water can be available in southern california. oh, and by the way, let's put this back up here. for those of you that are not familiar with california, we're talking about the los angeles basin here. so the recycling in this basin can deliver a million aircraft feet of water over the next decade or so, and that -- acre feet of water over the next decade or so, and that water can be put back into the great aquifers of southern california and even down into the san diego area. they are contaminated, but they can be cleaned and the water recycled and put back in, taken out and cleaned and round and round it goes. a million acre-feet. what does it mean to northern california and to the colorado
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and our friends in arizona and new mexico and nevada? it means that is a million acre-feet that los angeles, the great basin down here, does not sacramentoe from the river, colorado river, taking pressure off of those rivers and as you saw from the drought map, those rivers are in severe trouble. that is kind of a strategy that we put in place. now we're not geniuses, well maybe now we aren't geniuses. but what we do know is the state of california has already figured this out. and so what our legislation does -- tie here you go directly to mirror, augment and
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push forward what california did in the 2014 election, which is almost proposition 1 an a $7 billion proposition for the development of water supplies for california. so, look at this. water conservation. stormwater recapture, increase regional and local suppliers, $810 million. our legislation would fit in there with conservation and these other programs. safe drinking water, remember talking about the water trough for cattle in which the kids were taking water. here you have the safe drinking ater program and it was in the feinstein-garamendi legislation. yes. there it is. money to help small communities through the bureau of
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reclamation expanding programs so we can mirror, augustment, supplement and advance what california already wants to do when proposition 1 goes into effect. that's the water recycling? didn't i just talk about that? yes, i did. in the legislation that senator feinstein has already introduced and what i will soon introduce here, we will be once again working with the water recycling. a major federal effort to work with the state to maximize the water recycling. and this is also not on this list, but also a desalnizzation that works with some parts of california as well as other parts of the united states. i talked about groundwater. our legislation mirrors the groundwater program that is in proposition 1. add some additional money and
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directs the federal government to work directly with the state on sansing the groundwater issues. for those of you who have been following the drought in california over the last several decades, california has been excessively using its groundwater, so much so that in parts of the great central valley of california, maybe i'll put that map back up here -- in he great central valley of california, in the fresno area and south, we have seen a significant fall in the surface of the earth. it is literally sinking as a result of the groundwater being pumped out and you can go through this area and you'll see wells that are way, way above the ground and the ground is down here, maybe 10, 20 feet. so these overdrafting

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