Drought Study Reveals Immense Cost, Job Loss to California Agriculture

A study reveals California’s historic drought will cost the state $2.2 billion in 2014 and result in 17,000 lost agricultural jobs. Other findings of the report released July 15 by the University of California Davis Center for Watershed Sciences are:

  • The drought in 2014 will result in a 6.6 million acre-foot reduction in surface water available to agriculture
  • The shortage will cause losses of $810 million in crop revenue and $203 million in dairy and other livestock value
  • Direct costs to agriculture total $1.5 billion.

The Western Governors are aware of the impact of drought. At the recent Western Governors’ Association (WGA) Annual Meeting, the governors renewed a memorandum of understanding with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to continue sharing drought and extreme weather data with Western states. WGA Chairman and Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval also announced the Western Governors Drought Forum, which will foster a dialogue about best practices for drought management.

Click here to read the drought study and learn more about the drought initiatives of the Western Governors Drought Forum.

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