All Californians are, again, caught in the grip of drought. Whether you live in the heart of a city, a quiet neighborhood, run a farm or other business, live in the north or the south, we’re all feeling the pain.
With scientists warning that “boom or bust” water years are the new norm, we all knew we’d be back here again, but there are things we can do to avoid continuously ending up in this same situation and infrastructure funding from both the state and federal governments is the key.
First, we are simply not storing enough of our precipitation. Eighteen trillion gallons of rain fell in California in February 2019. Had we been able to capture and store more of that water, we could have mitigated the devastating consequences now facing us.
Most of southern California’s water supply is dependent on a system of dams, reservoirs, canals and the California Aqueduct, all in need of ongoing maintenance and repair. And while regional agencies have done much to increase local supply such as desalination and recycling, we need to do more.
It’s time for our state and federal governments to step up and take the actions only they can.
If Californians want water for homes and schools, thriving businesses, vibrant farms providing fresh food for our families, and a healthy environment, our leaders must invest in our water supply infrastructure and the time to do it is now.