California Finally Applies Statewide Water Restrictions to Farmers

The farmers affected have not experienced water reductions since 1977

Photo Modified: Flickr/tiarescott
More stringent cuts are expected to be introduced later this year. 

On Friday, June 12, California announced that it would finally begin applying sharp water restrictions to farmers in Sacramento, San Joaquin, and delta watersheds, whose water usage rights were first introduced in 1903 and were last reduced in 1977.

As the summer season continues, and as the drought persists, the restrictions are expected to become more severe.

Earlier this year, Governor Jerry Brown announced that the entire state would be subject to a 25 percent reduction of water use, but did not apply the cuts to farmers, although agriculture makes up an estimated 80 percent of California’s water consumption. 

Just last month, some 200 farmers did agree to cut their water usage by 25 percent in exchange for protection from more drastic cuts later in the season, which now appear inevitable.

“Demand in our key rivers systems are outstripping supply,” announced Caren Trgovcich, the State Water Resources Control Board’s chief deputy director. “Other cuts may be imminent.”

Related Links
California Governor Jerry Brown Approves $1 Billion Toward Drought Relief and Other Water ProjectsCalifornia Issues Executive Order for Water Use Reductions to Battle Historic Drought Governor Brown Urged to Overhaul California’s Water Allocation System, Last Updated in 1914Bowing to Pressure, Starbucks Moves Sourcing of Ethos Water Outside of Drought-Stricken California California Approves Statewide Emergency Cut in Water Usage by 25 Percent