The city of San Juan Capistrano, California, is using a tiered system to charge residents for water usage as a way of encouraging water conservation due to the state’s new water laws. But a state appeals court ruled that the city’s system is unconstitutional, possibly setting a precedent for other cities with a tiered rate.
Following years of severe drought and the lowest winter snowpack ever recorded in the state, California Gov. Jerry Brown announced a plan Wednesday to impose a 25 percent reduction on most of the state’s local water supply agencies. Continue reading
New research published in the journal Science Advances finds that the American Southwest and Great Plains in the 21st century risk the worst drought conditions in more than 1,000 years. By 2050, the U.S. could surpass the “mega-drought” conditions of the 12th and 13th centuries, with severe droughts lasting multiple decades. Continue reading
Heavy rain, snow and wind has been pummeling California over the past week in one of the strongest storms to hit the West Coast in years. But the downpour won’t be enough to chip away at the state’s persistent drought, which is now entering its fourth straight year. Continue reading
In the four years since the drought in California began, the lack of water has cost thousands of jobs, caused noticeable changes in the landscape and induced desperation among citizens who are running out of options. In search of a solution, farmers who have drilled deeper and deeper into the ground for available water have sought help from unlikely sources. NewsHour’s John Larson reports. Continue reading
Northern California is being hit with a massive storm that’s pounding the state with rain, snow and strong winds. The National Weather Service considers it the strongest storm the state has seen in five years and expects it to dump as much as 8 inches of rain over a 24-hour period. Since the storm began last night, more than 90,000 San Franciscans have already lost power. Continue reading
Water has become the unlikely subject of black market dealings in some the California’s worst-hit areas. With nearly 60 percent of the state currently experiencing exceptional drought — the highest level of drought designated by the U.S. Drought Monitor — and chances of a full recovery this winter looking unlikely, reports of water being stolen from private tanks or siphoned from public rivers are increasing.
California is facing its worst drought in generations — bad news for the state where nearly half of the nation’s fruits and vegetables are grown. With water from rivers and reservoirs in short supply, attention has turned to how to manage the state’s groundwater. How much can be safely pumped from underground? Special correspondent Spencer Michaels reports on the competing concerns. Continue reading