Well drilling rig in western Fresno County

Well drilling rigs are a common appliance on the central Valley landscape as farmers are forced to sink deeper wells in the face of curtailed surface water flows from lakes and reservoirs.

10 must-read drought stories for Aug. 26

California's collapsing aquifers and sinking land can be linked directly to the state's refusal to boost surface water supplies and storage for agriculture

Your organic fruits and veggies might have been irrigated with fracking wastewater Organic purists monitor everything that goes onto their crops – except water. Now the recycled and treated water used to extract oil is causing consternation because of claims that it is tainted with carcinogens.

Lawmaker wants label on food made with “fracking water” Though one University of California researcher says there is “not a shred of evidence” to support a problem using treated, recycled water from fracking to irrigate crops, that isn’t stopping one Sacramento lawmaker from wanting to regulate its use on crops.

California drought: farms now digging deeper for water Farmers are in survival mode as they tap the last-remaining sources of water they have because state and federal regulators curtailed their surface water flows.

California drought runs Central Valley towns into the ground … literally That sinking feeling is all-to real for much of central California and NASA has the numbers to prove it.

California drought: Climate change plays a role, study says. But how big? How can humans be to blame for something they can’t even accurately predict?

Drought brings soul searching to California winemaking Dryland grape growers say the technique of not irrigating grapes, but forcing them to tap deep for water, makes for higher quality wine, though yields are lower than on irrigated vines.

Letters pour in opposing increased flows on Merced River In spite of the wide-spread opposition to what are now commonly called “fish flows,” regulators continue to flush water from dwindling reservoirs while communities suffer the consequences.

Feds, tribes agree on fish-kill preventative flows Speaking of fish flows, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation is draining Trinity Lake because some sick salmon were discovered in the Klamath River.

21 California groundwater basins in “critical” condition, state panel says Why wouldn’t these groundwater basins be in “critical” condition. It’s not like state and federal regulators didn’t shut off traditional supplies of surface water to farmers so they could drain the lakes for fish flows. Meanwhile, farmers were left with their only other option: pump water from underground or go out of business.

California drought cost is $2.7 billion in 2015 Agriculture is hardest hit as a University of California chronicles the economic damage of the state’s drought. In all, about $2.7 billion will be lost to the state’s economy as 21,000 jobs dry up and over 500,000 acres of farmland lay fallow.

 

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