Cal­i­for­nia wa­ter use rises amid crip­pling drought

The Covington News - - THE WIRE -

SACRA­MENTO, Calif. (AP) — Cal­i­for­ni­ans in­creased their wa­ter con­sump­tion this year dur­ing the se­vere drought, de­spite pleas from the gover­nor to con­serve, fal­lowed farm fields and reser­voirs that are quickly drain­ing, ac­cord­ing to a re­port re­leased Tues­day.

The State Wa­ter Re­sources Con­trol Board re­leased up­dated re­sults from a wa­ter-use sur­vey that said con­sump­tion has risen 1 per­cent, even as Gov. Jerry Brown has called for a 20 per­cent cut­back.

The board’s re­port cor­rected sur­vey re­sults re­leased just a month ago that said use statewide had de­clined by just 5 per­cent.

The ear­lier sur­vey prompted the wa­ter board to con­sider the most dras­tic re­sponse yet to Cal­i­for­nia’s drought — im­pos­ing fines of up to $500 a day for people who waste wa­ter on land­scap­ing, foun­tains, wash­ing ve­hi­cles and other out­door uses.

Board Chair­woman Feli­cia Mar­cus said the new us­age fig­ures un­der­score the need for ac­tion.

“Not ev­ery­body in Cal­i­for­nia un­der­stands how bad this drought is ... and how bad it could be,” she said.

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