After years of drought, there seems to be no relief in sight. Then came January 2023. California was hit with 31 atmospheric rivers, record rainfall and a historic snowpack. But what happens when too little becomes too much?
ABC30 presents Feast or Famine: California’s Water Crisis. The new Taking Action Together original documentary explores the past 10 months as California transitioned from a drought state, to having an abundance of water with nowhere to go.
Watch Saturdays at 10pm on ABC30.
The documentary examines four areas:
California leads the US in food production with over $51 billion in revenue and is the 5th largest supplier of food in the world. But in a state facing a mega drought for decades, what does this mean for farmers? Learn the science behind California’s increasing drought and its effects on every California resident.
Immersion in ground water:
California’s largest reservoirs are not behind dams, but underground and California is already depleted. If over-reliance on groundwater pumping continues, it will have devastating effects. As of 2014, 5,300 domestic wells have dried up. If over-pumping continues, another 9,200 wells could dry up by 2040, leaving many rural, poor communities without the water they need.
Not only the drying up of the wells but the excessive pumping causes another phenomenon called subsidence, which is the sinking of the land. Since 2015 the Corcoran, CA area has seen over 4 feet of subsidence, leaving the area vulnerable to flooding.
California is experiencing climate whiplash in 2023, from years of drought. After 31 atmospheric rivers, record rainfall and historic snowpack, communities across the state experienced flooding that left many homeless. With full reservoirs and swollen rivers, record amounts of water have returned to what was once the largest body of water west of the Mississippi, Tulare Lake.
California’s Water Future:
So, is the drought over? What happens to all the extra time? What can we all do to help make California’s water future safer? Find out the small actions we can all take to make a difference when it comes to sustainability.