State Warns Of Potential Water Shortages

An extra dry summer with potential for water shortages – that’s what state and federal officials are telling Californians to prepare for.

Video Transcript

- Now to this, an extra dry summer with potential water shortages. That's what state and federal regulators are telling Californians to prepare for after another dry winter.

- But how will it impact our day-to-day lives? "CBS 13's" Adam Giles is getting answers.

ANNA GILES: Predictions for 2021 are bleak. Lake levels are low, and the Sacramento region is not getting the spring showers many hope for.

JEANINE JONES: Many places in the state have only had about half of average precipitation.

ANNA GILES: According to the US Drought Monitor, most of the Central Valley is experiencing severe to extreme drought conditions. This week, the Department of Water Resources lowered its expected forecast of water deliveries made to cities and farms by half. The experts hope for help from mountain snow.

JEANINE JONES: Hopefully, the runoff will start to pick up once some of that snow pack starts melting.

ANNA GILES: Communities both rural and urban can start conserving now.

MARLENE SIMON: People water too much already. So I think just cutting back how much they water, how often they water is gonna help a lot.

ANNA GILES: UC Davis horticulturalist Marlene Simons says maintaining a backyard paradise in dry conditions takes strategy.

MARLENE SIMON: You want to plant now when it's cool because the roots are getting established, and they're not stressed for water at the same time they're trying to get established.

JEANINE JONES: The other thing we really need to remind people about is the wildfire risk.

ANNA GILES: A warning top of mind. In 2020, California set a record for the most acres burned in a single year.

- 75% of California's precipitation typically falls between November and March. State officials have not yet declared a drought, but warn that could happen if the dry weather continues next year.