17 California communities could run out of water
January 29, 2014
As California’s drought intensifies, 17 communities in 10 counties across the state are in danger of running out of water within 60 to 120 days, state officials announced Tuesday. [MercuryNews]
The 17 water districts are all in small rural communities from Kern County to Mendocino County. In some of these communities wells are running dry and reservoirs are nearly empty.
While San Luis Obispo County is not one of the 10 counties, it is one of 27 counties in the state to be declared a natural disaster area by the U.S. Department of Agriculture because of the drought.
Even though rain is slated for Thursday, major storms are desperately needed to replenish the snowpack and reservoirs.
“This is a statewide drought. This is a serious drought,” said Bill Croyle, director of the state Drought Task Force.
“On the Central Coast, they have in the past looked at desalination,” Croyle added. “So if we lose our groundwater and surface water, we are going to go to the ocean. It is going to be expensive, but you bring in mobile plants and fire them up.”
Several years ago, the $176 million dollar controversial Nacimiento Water Project pipeline was completed. While promoted by some San Luis Obispo County staffers and officials, opponents of the pipeline argued for a desalination plant contending that during a serious drought water levels at the lake would be miniscule. Water levels at Nacimiento Lake are currently at about 5 percent.