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Two California Regions Officially Declared in Drought Crisis


Two California Regions Officially Declared in Drought Crisis

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California frequently faces drought challenges. Every year, the western state is at higher risk during the hot seasons, especially due to certain water-intensive agricultural methods. Recent years have seen an increased threat of drought, fueled by extensive wildfires that consume vast expanses of land, leading to significant drying of soil and air. While water availability varies across the state, the situation has officially escalated to an emergency level in two of its northern counties.

During a visit to the depleted shores of Lake Mendocino, California Governor Gavin Newsom declared an official drought crisis for Mendocino and Sonoma regions. This declaration grants state authorities more influence over the management of the Russian River watershed and regulations concerning river flow from the state’s reservoirs.

Newsom expressed, “We often misuse the term ‘historic,’ but this is undeniably a historic juncture, particularly for Lake Mendocino, which currently stands at 43% of its normal capacity for this time of year.”

Newsom acknowledged that the threat of drought or similar conditions is not limited to these two regions alone, but poses a potential risk to the entire state. Pressure has been mounting on Newsom from local lawmakers to declare a statewide drought, but the situation in the southern regions is less critical due to supplemental water resources from state and federal systems, compensating for the lack of rainfall. Additionally, Newsom pointed out a 13% reduction in overall urban water consumption compared to the last major drought event in California, attributing this decline to a prevailing “culture of conservation” among Californians.

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