California's Drought Is 'The Greatest Water Loss Ever Seen,' And The Effects Will Be Severe
Geege Schuman stashed this in Climate
California is one of the U.S.'s biggest food producers — responsible for almost half the country's produce and nuts and 25% of our milk and cream. Eighty percent of the world's almonds come from the state, and they take an extraordinary amount of water to produce — 1.1 gallons per almond.
But this food-rich state is in its third year of drought. In May, 100% of the state was in drought and the food-producing Central Valley was in an "exceptional drought."
How Bad Is It?
While the drought itself is the third-worst ever seen, it's responsible for the greatest water loss ever seen in the area, likely because farmers are using more water than ever before. The above-ground water available for farms decreased by one-third because of decreased rain, missing snow, and snow caps melting in the mountains.
In total, California will lose including about 3% of the total agriculture value of the state. That includes 17,000 jobs from, according to Jay Lund of UC Davis, "the sector of the population with the least ability to roll with the punches," he said. "You will get your fruits, nuts, vegetables, and wine, but there are pockets of deprivation in the Central Valley who are out of water and out of jobs."
man, that is bad news. more earthquakes even? daaang. i wonder what the redwoods will do?
and holy smokes! almonds require 1.1 gallons of water EACH?!?
When camping in Yosemite a few years ago I thought it was odd that almond wood was being sold for campfires. Now I understand.
A new law was just passed that will fine people for wasting water $500.
And neighbors are encouraged to rat each other out!