Action For The California Drought

By: Amanda Scoglio

What is the drought?

The primary cause of the drought is the lack of rain occurring during the typical rainy season which is from October to March. Since December of 2011 California has been experiencing one of the worst droughts that researchers have ever seen.

Why is this happening?

What’s causing the drought is a large zone of high pressure in the atmosphere just of the West Coast. This zone is four miles high and 2,000 miles long. This zone is creating a block which forces Pacific storms to pass by California. Because these storms are blocked from California they are they deflected to Alaska and Canada, sometimes even to the East Coast. Due to climate change, the change in in temperature has caused the high-pressure ridge which is continually blocking the rain.

How the state is taking action

Governor Jerry Brown has pitched multiple plans of action. The governor has asked that residents cut back on their water usage by 20%. Brown is proposing a $7.5 billion water bond. $2.7 billion will be used to create new water storages such as dams. The rest will be used for wastewater management, storm water capture, recycling, and groundwater cleaning. $1.6 billion would go to rainy-day reserve and to pay down debt. Brown also wishes to implement better floodwater controls and improved strategies for water conservation and recycling.

The Evidence

What can you do

The State Water Resources Control Board approved emergency measures making the excessive and unnecessary usage of water have a penalty. The subject could face up to $500 in fines per day. Make sure to abide by their requests. Some prohibitions that every citizen is expected to follow include:

  • not directly washing hard surfaces such as a sidewalk,
  • using drinkable water in a fountain unless the water recirculates,
  • watering landscapes that cause runoff,
  • and using a hose without a shut-off nozzle to wash a motor vehicle.