Shadow Lake Estates is built around a 46-acre man-made sport lake in Indio, Calif. on Friday, August 28, 2015. (Photo by Watchara Phomicinda/ Los Angeles News Group)

In the arid Coachella Valley, communities are taking a hell-or-high-water approach to growth

October 14, 2015 at 4:00 pm Comments are Disabled

This is a valley that water built. Cheap and abundant, water has turned an inhospitable desert into a Garden of Eden — something it was never meant to be and may not remain, even as tens of thousands of new homes are planned. Ordered by the state to cut waterRead More

California Drought: Parts of Central Valley sinking 2 inches a month

California Drought: Parts of Central Valley sinking 2 inches a month

August 25, 2015 at 3:00 pm Comments are Disabled

Parts of the great San Joaquin Valley are sinking almost 2 inches every month, as the state’s subterranean water supply is being drained to record lows by farms and towns coping with the devastating drought. On Wednesday, the most comprehensive study yet of the problem revealed the startling pace andRead More

Drought sets up ’emergency situation’ for California’s trees

Drought sets up ’emergency situation’ for California’s trees

August 24, 2015 at 5:29 pm Comments are Disabled

The rush to save water is claiming legions of unintended casualties — California’s trees. Specimens that have stood tall and strong for decades are stressed and dying because of the drought, as Californians turn off spigots to comply with Gov. Jerry Brown’s mandatory conservation measures. All over the state —Read More

"A portrait of Rudy Mussi, a Stockton farmer and "senior" water right holder under California's byzantine water rights law, at one of his water pumps at Middle River that he uses for irrigation, on May 19, 2015, in Stockton Calif. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group)"

California drought: Farmers’ ‘senior’ water rights under siege

June 11, 2015 at 9:00 am Comments are Disabled

STOCKTON — A 143-year-old piece of paper proves that Rudy Mussi has a legal right to water from the gently meandering Middle River that nourishes his family farm. But the same piece of paper — a “certificate of purchase,” signed in florid 19th-century handwriting and faded to near illegibility —Read More

Will drought force California to change its water rights system?

Will drought force California to change its water rights system?

May 29, 2015 at 3:29 pm Comments are Disabled

STOCKTON >> A 143-year-old piece of paper proves that Rudy Mussi has a legal right to water from the gently meandering Middle River that nourishes his family farm. But the same piece of paper — a “certificate of purchase,” signed in florid 19th-century handwriting and faded to near illegibility —Read More

Some oak trees are struggling to survive in California’s drought-scorched foothills. (Image by Daniel Griffin)

California drought likely a fixture, says Stanford study

March 4, 2015 at 1:49 pm 1 comment

Human-caused climate change is increasing drought risk in California — boosting the odds that our current crisis will become a fixture of the future, according to a major report Stanford scientists released Monday. The finding comes as cities across the Bay Area wrap up the warmest three-month stretch of winterRead More

In this Feb. 4, 2014 file photo, a warning buoy sits on the dry, cracked bed of Lake Mendocino near Ukiah. Conditions both man-made and environmental have contributed to California's dry, hot weather, say experts. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

Poll: Drought worries us, but mandatory water rules dislike

February 27, 2015 at 9:00 am Comments are Disabled

In what could be a fourth year of drought, virtually all Californians say the state’s water situation is serious — but the majority still favors voluntary rather than mandatory restrictions, a new Field Poll released Thursday found. They are concerned about water storage and supply, the poll found, an opinionRead More

Human noise, light are creating fundamental changes in ecological communities

Human noise, light are creating fundamental changes in ecological communities

February 25, 2015 at 2:29 pm Comments are Disabled

SAN JOSE — Human noise and light are creating fundamental changes in ecological communities — changing the density, diversity and dependencies of bird species that are biological barometers of the natural world. But peace can be restored to the wilderness by enlisting technologies that create a darker and more silentRead More

California drought brings smaller harvests, more hunger among farmworkers

California drought brings smaller harvests, more hunger among farmworkers

December 28, 2014 at 6:46 pm Comments are Disabled

DUCOR — Here in the produce basket of the nation, the drought so dried out the farm economy that farmworkers depend on charity to fill their pantries. These are the human faces of the diminished winter harvests: Manuel Avila, Jorge Rivera, Adriana Garcia, Jessica Yanez, Salud Santacruz and more thanRead More

California drought: Natural patterns, not human-caused climate change, federal study finds

California drought: Natural patterns, not human-caused climate change, federal study finds

December 11, 2014 at 9:00 am Comments are Disabled

Natural patterns, not human-caused climate change, produced one of California’s worst droughts, researchers have concluded. An atmospheric ridge over the North Pacific, which limited rain and snowfall over the past three years, was “due to natural variations of ocean systems, with sea surface temperatures largely responsible,” said Richard Seager, leadRead More