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This Second Expansion of the Emergency Drought Proclamation Now Covers 50 out of California’s 58 Counties and Calls for a 15% Voluntary Reduction in Water Use

Press Release Provided by the State Water Contractors  

On July 8th, Governor Newsom issued a second expansion of the original April 21 drought emergency proclamation, building on the May 10 expansion to bring roughly 86% of California into a state of emergency due to the current drought. Today’s expansion of the drought emergency proclamation reflects the fact that 85% of the state is facing extreme drought conditions. The announcement comes on the heels of the historic $3 billion appropriation for a drought relief package included in the state budget passed by the legislature on June 28.

The Governor is calling for a 15% voluntary reduction in water use, underscoring the urgent need for continued investments in California’s State Water Project (SWP) – the infrastructure two thirds of the state relies on that allows for the movement of water into storage under wet conditions, to support families, farms, businesses and communities during extended droughts.

“Droughts present an existential threat to California’s climate resiliency, food security, ecosystem health and our economy – all of which depend on the consistent and reliable movement of water through the SWP,” said Jennifer Pierre, General Manager of the State Water Contractors. “Conservation measures such as the call for a 15% voluntary reduction in water use are important tools for managing our state’s limited water supply during droughts, but conservation will only take us so far. If we do not commit to repairing and maintaining the SWP’s outdated infrastructure through smart investments like SB 559, we risk diminishing the SWP’s ability to help California respond to future droughts.”

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