Irrigation Association Creates Online Resource to Help California Drought

These images of Folsom Lake, a reservoir in Northern California, depict the impact of California’s drought. The top photo shows the lake at 97 percent of total capacity and 130 percent of its historical average for that date. The bottom photo shows the lake on Jan. 16, 2014, when it was at 17 percent of capacity and 35 percent of its historical average. Photo provided by the California Department of Water Resources.These images of Folsom Lake, a reservoir in Northern California, depict the impact of California’s drought. The top photo shows the lake at 97 percent of total capacity and 130 percent of its historical average for that date. The bottom photo shows the lake on Jan. 16, 2014, when it was at 17 percent of capacity and 35 percent of its historical average.
Photo provided by the California Department of Water Resources.

The Irrigation Association recently took several steps to help support the water crisis in California.

On Jan. 17, California Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency and directed state officials to prepare for drought conditions.

This declaration calls on government agencies to assist farmers and communities that are economically impacted by dry conditions.

The declaration also ensures the state can respond if Californians face drinking water shortages.

Ultimately, Gov. Brown called for an immediate 20-percent reduction in all water use throughout the state to stretch already stressed water supplies.

To help, the Irrigation Association took the following steps:

  • Created an online resource page for members, stakeholders, policymakers and others interested in learning more about the California drought. This content will be updated throughout the year.
  • Wrote to more than 50 water providers throughout California, offering drought resources and promoting efficient irrigation as an alternative solution to restricting water use. The letters will be posted to the drought resource page as they are mailed.
  • Joined other agricultural and conservation groups in calling for national policymakers to set aside their differences and find both short- and long-term solutions to the drought in California. A letter was sent on Feb. 26 to all members of Congress that highlights the importance of responsible water management in the rural west to benefit both agricultural production and the environment. This letter can also be found on the drought resource page.
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