CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 10, 1991
Several years ago, when government officials first started talking about California's severe drought, I turned a deaf ear. How could I take what they said seriously when every other day they were approving the construction of new homes? During the last few years, I actually increased my water consumption while many of my dumb neighbors cut back. Why? Because I realized that when things got really bad (but not that bad to halt the construction of new homes), homeowners would be forced to reduce their water consumption based on a previous year's use. I wanted to make sure that my previous year was high enough so that when I was forced to reduce, I'd still be able to do all the things I like to do. If the politicians had stopped new construction once the drought became apparent, I would have done my part.
February 10, 1991
Upon reading your editorial "Agriculture's Big Thirst Is No Longer a Sacred Cow" (Jan. 16), one might draw the conclusion that agriculture has been dragged, kicking and complaining, into the discussion over how cities and farms share water resources in times of drought. That is unfair and inaccurate. The reader might also, after reading your editorial, conclude that farmers are getting all the water they want while city dwellers face mandatory rationing. The truth is that many farms in California are getting less than 50% of their normal allotment of water this year, and if the drought continues, may be entirely cut off from state and federal supplies.
July 22, 1990
Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley and the City Council have been loudly braying that we are in a profoundly dangerous drought and at the same time promoting the Porter Ranch development ("City Council OKs Massive Porter Ranch Development," July 12) that at last count has 3,395 homes with 11,000 occupants. These will be upscale homes that will, no doubt, have multiple toilets being flushed multiple times, swimming pools being filled, and refilled, showers being showered and lawns being sprinkled.
September 1, 2012 |
LAKE PROVIDENCE, La. - Eight grim-faced men sit in a cramped, impromptu war room in the shadow of a levee on the Mississippi River. With laptops opened to Web pages of the National Weather Service and the Army Corps of Engineers, the group of farmers, grain brokers and barge operators is engaged in what humans have grappled with for more than 200 years in the Mississippi Delta: puzzling out the latest blow from a stubborn river that refuses every...
October 25, 2009 |
For centuries, Adam Abdi Ibrahim's ancestors herded cattle and goats across an unforgiving landscape in southern Somalia where few others were hearty enough to survive. This year, Ibrahim became the first in his clan to throw in the towel, abandoning his land and walking for a week to bring his family to this overcrowded refugee camp in Kenya. He's not fleeing warlords, Islamist insurgents or Somalia's 18-year civil war. He's fleeing the weather. "I give up," said the father of five as he stood in line recently to register at the camp.
February 21, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Much of the West continues to struggle with unusually dry conditions, raising the prospect of another year of wildfires, stunted crops and unnavigable stretches of river in various parts of the country, according to a federal assessment. More than two-thirds of the country is under abnormally dry to exceptional drought conditions, "which, although serious, is a slight improvement since fall 2012," said the National Drought Early Warning Outlook. While the report said the drought was over in most of the nation east of the Mississippi River, the portion of the country still facing drought - most of the West and Florida - should expect it "to persist or intensify.
August 2, 2011 |
The people mass outside the gates hundreds deep and eerily still, many squatting in the red dirt holding emaciated children. They wait for water and medicine. But most of all, they wait for an open spot at the world's largest refugee complex. The worst drought in decades has blistered large parts of the Horn of Africa, turning it into a hellscape of deserted villages and dead rivers. The United Nations says 12 million people need emergency aid. Those hardest to reach are in Somalia, where a quarter of the country's 7.5 million people are on the move.
July 23, 2011 |
Nurture matters — in plants as well as people. Cloned trees raised in different places and environments react differently to drought conditions even though they're genetically identical, scientists have found. "Turns out the trees have a memory, and they are adapted to the environment in which they're grown," said Richard Meilan, a Purdue University molecular tree physiologist who was not involved in the study. Researchers have long been interested in how much genes, versus environment, contribute to a creature's biology and behavior; the many "twin studies" performed with humans attest to that fascination.
August 14, 2012 |
The U.S. Department of Agriculture, in a bid to help drought-stricken farmers, announced it would buy up to $170 million worth of meat from affected livestock producers. The prolonged Midwest drought has driven up feed costs for livestock farmers in affected areas, and the purchase of pork, lamb, chicken and catfish will provide some relief, the USDA said in a statement. Many farmers had been selling livestock as they struggled to feed their herds and flocks, creating a temporary surplus of meat and lowering prices.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 25, 2010 |
It's too early to know if California's three-year drought is ending, but the train of storms that plowed into California last week pushed the critical mountain snowpack to slightly above normal levels and sent water rushing into half-empty reservoirs. At his office at Shasta Dam north of Redding, Brian Person watched the biggest reservoir in the state rise 4 to 5 feet a day on Wednesday and Thursday. "Particularly following the abysmal hydrology of '07, '08 and '09, this is a fantastic experience," said Person, an area manager with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.