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.
As the drought dries up California’s wetlands, traveling birds such as ducks, geese and eagles are struggling to survive and breed. “This drought is bad. The odds are against us,” a state expert said.
Drought resilience depends on location but also extraordinary engineering — determining which California places are running out of water this year and which remain in good shape.
About 4,300 users were issued notices to halt diversions from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
Experts say the current drought is hotter and drier than previous ones, meaning water is evaporating faster.
California wildfires have burned nearly five times as many acres on state land this year compared to the same time period last year.
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