From: Mark Grossi, Fresno Bee
Mendota Mayor Robert Silva Friday said food lines already have begun in his west Fresno County city -- where he predicts the jobless rate will hit 50% among the largely Latino farmworker residents.
"The line was a block long today," Silva said. "This is going to be tragic this summer. This is going to be ugly. We need water released from the dams for farming now."
From: Collin Bettles, Farm Weekly (Australia)
California is suffering one of its worst ever droughts and if it continues, social and economic dislocation is set to increase for rural communities. The US's biggest agricultural-production State is enduring its third consecutive drought year, with expectations farm-related income will be cut significantly.
The California Farm Water Coalition recently estimated that 800,000 acres (324,000 hectares) of the State's farm land would be idle in 2014, sparking about $2.7 billion in crop losses.
From: Staff, Porterville Recorder
No water diversions from Tule. Surveyors up and down the Sierra mountains, including those in Sequoia National Forest, found little or no snow on Thursday.
Joshua Courter, hydrologist with Sequoia National Forest, said for the second consecutive year, no snow was found at Quaking Aspen at 7,000 feet elevation above Springville. No, or little snow was the theme across the Sierra. State water managers said California's snowpack is at 18 percent of average for the date, adding surveyors fund more bare ground than snow Thursday.
From: Laith Agha, Marin Independent Journal
The impacts of California's worst drought in recorded history are hard to avoid. Water bills go up, lawns go brown, and gray water goes trendy.
The squeeze on water use in times like this can be especially tight for Marin County's most prevalent employers.
From: John Lindt, VIsalia Times Delta
Instead of water from Millerton Lake flowing south down the Friant Kern Canal to irrigate farms in Tulare County, water from the dam may be released down the river to wet fields in the Los Banos area as soon as next week.
With no word out of the federal Bureau of Reclamation on increasing the water allotment to the San Joaquin River Exchange Contractors, that group's executive director Steve Chedester says they are poised to "make a call" on river water to be released from Friant Dam next week. The Exchange Contractors have priority on San Joaquin River water unless the bureau supplies them with an alternative as they always have until this year's drought. The contractors are guaranteed 75 percent of their contract supply, even in a dry year.
From: Jonathan Hoff, Modesto Bee
Why is it that The Bee has not run an article that discusses the massive amounts of water being released through our rivers over the last two weeks? Instead, The Bee focuses on pressure placed on groundwater supplies by growers of permanent crops (almonds). When surface water is released from reservoirs to the ocean, and not transferred onto farms, farmers have no choice but to rely on water pumped from the ground.
From: Andrew Creasey, Marysville Appeal-Democrat
The weakest link of the south Sutter County levee system will be getting some much-needed repairs. Property owners in Reclamation District 1001 voted in favor of a tax assessment that will generate about $300,000 for the district, which has been in dire financial straits.
The funds will help the district repair three sections of its levees that the Department of Water Resources labeled as "critical." The revenue will also allow the district to take advantage of a Flood System Repair program from the DWR that offers an 85 percent match on capital projects.
From: John Coleman & Andy Katz, Contra Costa Times
Our state is in the midst of a relentless drought. But after a winter of dismal precipitation, the water supply prospects of the 1.3 million East Bay Municipal Utility District customers are in far better shape than during the last drought.
That's thanks to the Freeport Regional Water Facility, the crucial investment our generation of ratepayers has made in water supply reliability.
From: Henry Brean, Las Vegas Review-Journal
Farmers, cities and power plant operators could soon be paid to cut their use of the Colorado River under a new interstate program aimed at keeping more water in Lake Mead and Lake Powell.
The four largest communities fed by the Colorado plan to pour millions of dollars into a fund to help farmers and industrial operations pay for efficiency improvements and conservation measures to cut their river water use.
From: J.N. Sbranti, Modesto Bee
Stanislaus, Merced and San Joaquin counties rank near the top in agricultural sales for the United States, but the just-released 2012 Census of Agriculture shows this region's crops have shifted dramatically.
It's nuts. Literally.