California’s drought official

Golden State cities asked to implement water-use restrictions

On Jan. 17, Gov. Jerry Brown declared a drought emergency for the Golden State, and asked Californians to voluntarily cut their water use by 20 percent.

Just prior to Brown’s declaration, some cities had already implemented water-use restrictions, according to Al Jazeera America. Residents of Folsom must limit lawn-watering to twice weekly and use a shutoff valve on hoses while washing cars. Folsom Lake’s water level is currently so low that the remains of a 19th-century town submerged in 1955 have reappeared.

The city of Santa Cruz, whose primary water source is Folsom Lake, is telling residents they cannot wash paved surfaces and may be cited for watering their yards between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.; additionally, restaurants there are allowed to serve water only upon request, and swimming pools cannot be drained and refilled.

The Sacramento City Council had also recently voted to require a reduction in water use of 20 percent to 30 percent, and a drought emergency was declared for Mendocino County.