The Crisis Over California’s Water

This article from CounterPunch.org further illustrates the situation regarding water availability in California:

It doesn’t take long once you’ve left the greater Los Angeles area, away from all the lush lawns, water features, green parkways and manicured foliage to see that California is in the midsts of a real, and potentially deadly water crisis. Acres and acres of abandoned farms, dry lake beds, empty reservoirs—the water is simply no longer there and likely won’t ever be back.

What’s happening here in California is far more than a ‘severe drought’ as the media has dubbed the situation. The word ‘drought’ gives the impression that this is all short-lived, an inconvenience we have to deal with for a little while. But the lack of water isn’t temporary, it’s the new norm. California’s ecology as some 38 million residents know it is forever changing—and climate change is the culprit. At least that’s the prognosis a few well-respected climatologists have been saying for the last two decades, and their predictions have not only been accurate, they’ve been conservative in their estimates.

UC Santa Cruz Professor Lisa Sloan co-authored a 2004 report in which she and her colleague Jacob Sewall predicted the melting of the Arctic ice shelf would cause a decrease in precipitation in California and hence a severe drought. The Arctic melting, they claimed, would warp the offshore jet stream in the Pacific Ocean. Not only have their models proved correct, Prof. Sloan recently told Joe Fromm of ThinkProgress she believes “the actual situation in the next few decades could be even more dire” than their study suggested.

To read more about the changing world and what you can do to prepare, visit: www.greatwavesofchange.org

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