Californians Are Under Drastic Water Restrictions

Governor Jerry Brown (D) is taking action in the face of California's well-documented drought. Speaking at the annual California snow survey in the Sierra Nevada mountains, Brown issued an executive order to cut water usage.

Uvas Resevoir

The Uvas Resevoir in Santa Clara, Calif. Photo by Don DeBold / Flickr.

"Today we are standing on dry grass where there should be five feet of snow. This historic drought demands unprecedented action. Therefore, I'm issuing an executive order mandating substantial water reductions across our state. As Californians, we must pull together and save water in every way possible," Brown said.

This comes after a widespread report said that the state has just a year's worth of water left. Last year, Brown declared a state of emergency, saying "the magnitude of the severe drought conditions presents threats beyond the control of the services, personnel, equipment and facilities of any single local government and require the combined forces of a mutual aid region or regions to combat." 

 Don Pedro Lake on the Tuolumne River

Don Pedro Lake on the Tuolumne River in Moccasin, Calif. Photo by docentjoyce / Flickr.

The executive order means the State Water Resources Control Board must reduce water use by 25 percent. He has already urged California residents, farms, and businesses to cut usage by 20 percent. California is currently undergoing its lowest snowpack ever recorded, and this accounts for around 30 percent of the state's water supply. California needs 11 trillion gallons of water to bounce back from the shortage. In February, Brown announced a $1 billion initiative to fight the drought in California.