Tuesday, 22 August, 2017

California governor declares end to drought emergency

Mae Harvey | 09 April, 2017, 03:25

Those efforts clearly helped, fueled by a slew of mandates and restrictions that were under affect during the state drought emergency, which formally came to an end on Friday.

If the general public doesn't take caution Brown's warning, California may find itself right back where it began just a few short years ago.

Marcus goes on to say, "There's a societal change in our attitudes - not just about watering use but what makes for a lovely outdoor ornamental landscape that's part and parcel of a major mind-set shift for many Californians", Marcus said.

"This drought emergency is over, but the next drought could be around the corner", Brown said in a cautionary statement.

The drought was responsible for reducing farm production, killing 100 million trees, harming wildlife, lowering ground-water basins while severely depleting water supplies in several rural communities forced to rely on bottled water provided by the state.

A lot of them are in Tulare County, a farming powerhouse in central California's San Joaquin Valley.

Conservation will surely still continue, as Californians cut down on their water use by more than 22-percent from June 2015 to January 2017.

The LADWP said its customers have reduced their per capita water use by 20 percent in less than three years, which met Mayor Eric Garcetti's Sustainable City pLAn goal outlined in 2014. Jerry Brown declared the end of the state's years-long drought but vowed to continue efforts to clamp down on wasteful uses of water.

Gov. Brown kept on the books water reporting requirements, plus prohibiting residents from watering during and after rainfall, hosing off the sidewalks, plus irrigating ornamental turf on road medians.

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The state's announcement also offered a sobering reminder of the effects of a drought that caused "the driest four-year statewide precipitation on record", from 2012 to 2015.

"In the late '80s drought, we learned how much we can save indoors".

In the counties of Fresno, Kings, Tulare and Tuolumne, emergency drinking water programs will stay in place.

The municipal agencies will have until 2025 to comply with the new targets, and will have considerable leeway on how to meet them, she said.

This "state-of-emergency" started five long years ago, at a time when almost the whole of the state experienced historically-low rainfall.

California officials have credited residents for doing their part to conserve water by taking shorter showers and ripping out grass lawns to install landscaping that requires minimal irrigation, among other measures. As of last week, the snowpack stood at 150 percent of normal.

Last year, toxic algae showed up in more than 40 state lakes and waterways from Los Angeles to the northern reaches of California, the highest count in state history.

"Going forward, it's critical for San Diegans to keep embracing water-use efficiency as a way of life, including by continuing to adopt WaterSmart landscapes that maintain our quality of life while using less water", said Muir.

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