Gov. Brown To Officially Declare Drought In California

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A mud-covered boat is seen in an area that was until recently underwater July 26, 2007 in the Lake Mead National Recreation Area, Nevada. A seven-year drought and increased water demand spurred by explosive population growth in the Southwest has caused the water level at Lake Mead, which supplies water to Las Vegas, Arizona and Southern California, to drop over 100 feet to its lowest level since the 1960s. The National Park Service has been forced to close or extend boat launch ramps, and move entire marinas to try to keep up with the receding water levels. Because the water at the lake, the largest man-made reservoir in North America, isn't being replenished as fast as it's being used, water managers are now working to come up with plans to combat the effects of continued population growth, drought and a dwindling supply of water from the Colorado River due to climate change. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

A mud-covered boat is seen in a dried lake bed. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

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SANTA CLARA (KCBS) — Gov. Jerry Brown said Monday his administration would soon declare an official drought designation for California to help maximize water resources across the state. Meanwhile, local Bay Area communities are already experiencing the effects.

Brown spoke at Fresno City Hall press conference on Monday after meeting with local water district officials, farmers and other agricultural leaders.

He said that, by some measures, 2013 was the driest year in California history.


“In many ways it’s a mega-drought; it’s been going on for number of years and then we also have the prospect of global climate change and that can affect us as well,” Brown said.

The effects of the drought are being felt in the Bay Area, including Santa Clara County where Supervisor David Cortese told KCBS that his office is getting calls from some rural residents concerned about their water supply.

“We’ve had aquifers dry up. I was approached by a constituent telling me that his well dried up and he’s got a large home in a rural area that’s just without water,” he said.

“They are trucking water in and this is not an uncommon situation right now.”

Cortese said he was asking county administrators to conduct a thorough analysis of the drought conditions and propose long and short-term solutions.


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