Water agencies across the state have been calling the water shortage a statewide crisis. The Governor urged Californians to voluntarily reduce water use by twenty-percent. Tim Quinn with the Association of California Water Agencies says the declaration is a wake-up call for Californians to conserve. He says the emergency proclamation allows someone with water to sell to someone who needs it.
“If Folsom Reservoir is one of your primary sources of supply you’re in trouble right now, if you’re a farmer in the San Joaquin Valley dependent upon very much curtailed water deliveries that need to be conveyed across the Delta, you’re in trouble right now, we need to make sure that those places that are in trouble get the relief that they need,” Quinn said.
The proclamation also directs the California Department of Water Resources to identify groundwater shortages, monitor the use of farmland and provide an update by April 30th.
There was a slight reduction in the percentage of drought in California over the past week. But the U.S. Drought Monitor says it will take time to ease the state's historic four-year drought.
A new study says California's four-year drought has reduced hydroelectricity generation, resulting in higher electricity costs to ratepayers and increased greenhouse gas pollution.
Legislation introduced in the California state Assembly would create the Lower American River Conservancy to improve, protect, preserve and possibly expand the 5,000-acre American River Parkway.
January brought above-average rainfall and snow to much of California, partly due to El Niño. But forecasters say the ocean warming condition is "taking a break" for the next week or longer.
The U.S. Drought Monitor says, other than a slight reduction in exceptional drought in the northern Sierra, it needs more time to assess impacts of the recent moisture on California's long-term drought.