For the last five years California had one of the harshest droughts in its history.
You might have seen the pictures of Lake Folsom or Lake Oroville, among many, many others.
Courtesy: State of California
But the worst is yet to come…
A third of California’s water comes from the Sierra Nevada mountains. Just this month the Department of Water Resources predicted that the mountains will produce about three quarters of the normal runoff during the months of heaviest snowmelt, shorting the rivers and reservoirs that typically provide California’s water.
This will become the fifth year of historic drought for the Golden State.
Governor Jerry Brown has just issued an executive order that makes certain emergency water cuts from the past few years permanent. “Now we know that drought is becoming a regular occurrence, and water conservation must be a part of our everyday life.”
You might be thinking, I don’t live in California. Why should I care?
Did you know that more than 50 percent of all our fruits and vegetables are grown in the state of California?
And it’s not just fruits and vegetables. This year’s cattle herd hit a 61-year low of 89.3 million head of cattle, and this number is decreasing every day.
In 2015 the drought cost California over $2.7 billion, according to a new UC Davis study. (Source)
The study also states that the drought has reduced seasonal farm employment by 10,100 jobs this year and 21,000 if you count the indirect job losses (truck drivers, food processing workers, etc.).
The Californian Department of Food and Agriculture warned that current drought conditions coupled with the existing man-made drought mean that Americans will pay more for groceries. (Source)
…which means that YOU’ll pay more for groceries!
The things that scare me the most are the studies that show that this drought will continue. It will stay with us for a long time….
And it is already starting to have devastating effects.
Recently I’ve seen this video of a small town called Stratford, California. Haven’t heard of it? Well, if the drought continues, there will be nothing left to hear about….
Farmers are forced to sell land to pay bills, others are forced to move to bigger cities, and almost every business is on the verge of bankruptcy.
This rattles me because we are not talking about big oil, big pharmaceutical companies, or big food processing companies; we are talking about Americans just like you and me, about the average citizen who works every day, at one job or two jobs, to put food on the table.
Everybody is in pretty bad shape, and the thing that scares us the most is that this is out of our control.
Don’t think for one moment I’m just sitting here doing nothing, waiting for the government to help me. I feel the same about our politicians as I feel about the weather:
I hope for the best, but I prepare for the worst.
I am constantly looking for ways to improve my crops. My research led me to a lot of interesting and innovative ways of growing food. I know the best plants to grow in arid zones, I tried hay stale and bale gardening, and I found the most productive ways to use small patches of land. If you’ve heard of it, I’ve tried it—maybe even some methods that were clearly destined to fail. But what you shouldn’t do is just as important as what you should do.
So after a while I realized that the best way to grow vegetables is a system that recycles water. The best part of this particular method of growing food is that you don’t lose any water to soil infiltration, only through evaporation, plus you won’t get just fruits or vegetables; you’ll also get meat. If you are interested in this method, you can learn more from this video:
Want to find out more about the drought and how to build your own aquaponics system with a low budget?
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another thing that would help California’s drought would be to stop Nestle from stealing their water at $530.00 a year for the permit and making billions on selling it back to the public..
The samething is happening to the Great Lakes too.
while people were conserving water and keeping buckets in their showers to catch water our great governor jerry brown announced we have enough water for another million mexican immigrants. whatever the word sustainable means to them is the opposite of what it means to me !!
Does anyone here have an aquaponic system?
According to folks who claim to study such things, in recent (within the last 10,000 years) the Southwest, including SoCal endured a 500 year drought. If we are facing such drought, we have just begun.
It’s a little late now, but at one time the California coast was dotted with steam electric generating plants. The environmentalists fought and fought and a great many of them have been shut down. For a long time, like John the Baptist crying in the wilderness I was advocating using the steam generating plants to supplement our water supply. They take in ocean water, convert it to steam to drive the turbines that generate the electricity and then use cooling towers to cool down the ocean water before dumping it back in the ocean so that it doesn’t boil the fish.
It wouldn’t have taken much engineering to distill that steam into distilled water and merge it into the local water system. The U.S. Navy has been using distilled water on board its ships since they first installed engines on their ships in lieu of sails. It’s old, proven technology that works. The water is already being heated to steam levels, so little or no extra energy would have been needed.
Had the State of California invested the billions it spent on moving water in an open ditch from NorCal to Socal on improving the steam distillation process California would not be suffering from a drought situation. The ditch bought votes from the labor unions involved and big bucks from the construction companies that benefitted and the bonds were sold. We are now reaping the results of that short-sighted politician’s solution to a chronic problem.
I will now take my soap box and steal away into the gathering gloom.
The steam is not from the salt water. The salt water is used only as coolant and not boiled. The steam is recycled with little loss. Currently over 25% of CA water is used for court mandated “environmental” purposes. The rivers are kept running to keep snail darters and delta smelt from dying out.
But the water in the cooling towers is heated instead of cooling it down why not continue to heat it until it is steam if the turbines are not steam driven with ocean water? The Navy has been generating fresh water at sea since steam driven ships started on ocean voyages.