Water wonk to California. Breathe. you will survive the drought


California, it’s not the end of times! Dust will not be coming out of faucets anytime soon. Yes, the drought in California is dire. Everyone needs to cut back on water use as much as possible. Some communities will indeed experience serious water shortages. Farmers and ranchers who depend on imported water are indeed screwed. For most Californians though, the drought will require everyone use less water and not much more.

Journalist John Fleck writes for the Albuquerque Journal and blogs about water. He says other states have survived serious drought and California will too.

Having watched Texas go through this, and having covered and lived through New Mexico’s tough times last year, I’m going to boldly predict that most water providers will limp through to the finish line. In Texas, the national press repeatedly descended on Spicewood Beach to tell the story of drought because nobody else was actually out of water. People deal with this by using less water. Somewhere in the dangerous future, conservation may lead to demand hardening that will make this a much more difficult problem. But for now, there are a whole lot of you using more than 200 gallons of water per person per day. You’ve got plenty of room to move.

Years ago, the great Kelly Redmond offered this helpful definition of drought – “insufficient water to meet needs.” The key here is that needs can change, and this year, my beloved California, they are going to have to.

You can do this.

We have no choice.