Calif. declares drought emergency, mulls rationing

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on Friday declared a state emergency due to drought and said he would consider mandatory water rationing in the face of nearly $3 billion in economic losses from below-normal rainfall this year.

To view dictionary popup window put your cursor on the blue scripture words.
Famines and Troubles

“For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be earthquakes in divers places, and there shall be faminesStrongs 3042:limos, lee-mos´; probably from 3007 (through the idea of destitution); a scarcity of food:—dearth, famine, hunger. and troublesStrongs 5016: tarache, tar-akh-ay´; feminine from 5015; disturbance, i.e. (of water) roiling, or (of a mob) sedition:—trouble(-ing). these are the beginnings of sorrowsStrongs 5604:odin, o-deen´; akin to 3601; a pang or throe, especially of childbirth:—pain, sorrow, travail.
Strongs 3601: odune, od-oo´-nay; from 1416; grief (as dejecting):—sorrow.
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—Mark 13:8

As many as 95,000 agricultural jobs will be lost, communities will be devastated and some growers in the most economically productive farm state simply are not able to plant, state officials said, calling the current drought the most expensive ever.

Schwarzenegger, eager to build controversial dams as well as more widely backed water recycling programs, called on cities to cut back water use or face the first ever mandatory state restrictions as soon as the end of the month.

“California faces its third consecutive year of drought and we must prepare for the worst — a fourth, fifth or even sixth year of drought,” Schwarzenegger said in a statement, adding that recent storms were not enough to save the state.

He called on urban water users to cut consumption by 20 percent and state agencies to implement a water reduction plan. Meanwhile, the state of emergency will let planners fast-track some infrastructure building.

Legislators have also revived a $10 billion bond package to build new dams, fund conservation programs and build plants to recycle waste water and recharge aquifers.

“There is a bit of a perfect storm, pardon the pun, developing here,” Republican state Senator Dave Cogdill told Reuters after introducing one of the new bond packages. “I hope the attitude toward surface storage, the larger projects, has changed.”

The state water department will report on conservation progress by the end of March, and if the situation has not sufficiently improved, water rationing and mandatory cuts in water use could be instituted, the governor said.

California produces more than half the nation’s fruits, vegetables and nuts, and farmers in recent weeks have been staggered by reports that the main federal source of irrigation water will go dry this year and the top state water project will not fulfill more than 15 percent of requested water.

The Central Valley, a fertile but arid region stretching some 500 miles (805 km) from Bakersfield to Redding, is the agricultural heartland of California, which ranks as the nation’s No. 1 farm state in terms of the value of crops produced — more than $36 billion a year.

Concern about California’s tight water supply is on the upswing at the same time as officials in the state capital of Sacramento rally behind the idea of creating jobs with public works spending. Unemployment in the most populous state rose to double digits — 10.1 percent — in January.

Water planners and environmentalists are also broadly in agreement that climate change is creating a more erratic climate that could lengthen dry spells.

“We’re going to have droughts. That’s a fact of life. They may be worse in the future,” state water chief Lester Snow told reporters on a conference call. (Additional reporting by Jim Christie; Editing by Christian Wiessner)

  1. Hale Meserow, 28 February, 2009

    I lived near Sacramento from 1970-72. During this time, Folsum Reservoir was always full, and we’d waterski anytime we could. In the next decade, the Sierra Mountains didn’t receive the normal snowfall, and the water level in Folsum Reservoir fell to zero. The area endured a decade of drought. In the eleventh and twelfth years, the snowfall was prodigious, and the reservoir filled again.

    Though that drought was severe, it was nothing compared to what California is facing now. This may be of Biblical (i.e. prophetic) proportions.

    My only request in discussing this is that no one will blame the California drought on “global warming.” When various places around the world, indeed around the USA, are experiencing record cold and record precipitation, I grow weary of hearing the mantra of those who promote the hoax of mankind’s destruction of the planet. All that talk has accomplished is to make Al Gore wealthy.

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