California’s Drought Is a Horrible Nightmare

Anyone who lives in California needs to know that the ongoing drought isn’t just bad. It’s literally one of the worst water shortages in recorded history. In fact, climatologists have found evidence suggesting that it’s the most severe drought in over 1,000 years. Even if this isn’t the start of a megadrought spanning decades, as some scientists speculate that it is, the effects still aren’t going to be disregarded by anyone soon.

By now, just about everyone in California knows that farming takes up the vast majority of our water supplies, but most people don’t realize that half of our water does not come directly from rainwater. It’s an underground supply, and there’s a limited amount.

Even more concerning, this set amount of water is being frittered away at an alarming rate. In contrast to other western states, there’s been a lack of reasonable regulations on this source before this year. And these new regulations won’t provide fully sustainable water usage practices any time in the next 10 years. Hopefully, they will be 25 years from now.

But odds are that you aren’t a farmer and really don’t care about catastrophically falling water tables or how farming lobbying might ruin California’s farming industry before your 40th birthday. So how will the current drought affect you?

Well, skiers in Lake Tahoe already noticed that the snowpack, which usually lasts through May, saw major ski resorts closing for the winter in early February for the second year in a row. That’s an inconvenience for NorCal vacationers for now, but it’ll be interesting to see if the California snowsports industry fails or changes dramatically in the near future.

Here in Southern California, fires often seen in spring and summer will get more severe and more frequent. Also, due to the science behind groundwater flow, coastal cities will be dealing with the expensive problem of keeping seawater from ruining our groundwater supply. Otherwise, we’ll start having to look to pump even more water from other places, not as if that will be much of an option.

And we can’t say we didn’t see this coming. A book more relevant than ever, “Cadillac Desert,” a name referring to the California Central Valley, predicted the water crisis in the area all the way back in 1986. Evidently, Californians have been covering their ears about this for at least 30 years. Now that we’re facing the results of poor water conservation, our generation will be forced to deal with the consequences.

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