In July I went to North California to see some family and I literally saw the effects of the water drought that’s occurring. It not only causing unusable farmland, dead livestock and wildfire but it’s also causing higher electricity prices and rising greenhouse-gas emission.
98% of California is facing a drought and 10% is in a state of suffering in “exceptional drought!” The state has been in an official drought emergency since mid-January.
California relies heavily on the electricity generated from hydroelectric dams; hydro-power can provide anywhere from one-tenth to one-quarter of the electricity generated in the state. But with the drought becoming even worst the entire effect of the dam system is becoming useless and expensive for everyone.
Since the situation is getting to the point of no return, California is turning towards the Northwest to aide in their situation. States like Washington, Oregon and Idaho are giving some of their hydroelectric power to California. But unfortunately, this will not last for long because the precipitation is about half the normal level in these states. This means that California is using more natural gas to aide in this drought society.
The question now, is the return back to natural gas inevitable or should there be stronger measures taken to make this situation more sustainable? And can California provide us with an example to help change this natural disaster that is spreading throughout the world?
To read more references at: http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/02/07/californias_water_woes