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Saturday, February 15, 2014

California's Drought Could Be the Worst in 500 Years

California's workers' compensation system is about to be afflicted with yet another issue....drought and its economic consequences upon the workers' compensation system. Today's post was shared by Mother Jones and comes from

The remains of Cachuma Lake, the main water source for 200,000 people in southern Santa Barbara County. Ruaridh Stewart/ZUMA
The Golden State is in the midst of a three-year drought—and scientists believe that this year may end up being the driest in the last half millennium, according to University of California-Berkeley professor B. Lynn Ingram. Californians are scared, with good reason: Fire danger in the state is high, and drinking-water supplies are low.
But the drought will have repercussions outside the state's borders, as well. California produces a good chunk of the nation's food: half of all our fruits and vegetables, along with a significant amount of dairy and wine.
So how will this historically dry period affect Californians—and the rest of us? Here are a few important facts to keep in mind:
How bad is it? According to the United States Drought Monitor, most of the state is experiencing "extreme drought," the second highest of six rankings. About 10 percent of the state is experiencing "exceptional drought," the highest possible level. As of this week, 17 communities are in danger of running out of water, forcing some to buy it or run pipes from other districts.
CA drought map
CA drought map
CA drought map key
CA drought map key
What do scientists say about the drought? Scientists can't predict how wet or dry a specific season is going to be, but they can forecast drought trends over time, and they've been warning us for decades that the droughts will become...
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