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  4. A record amount of rain and snow has replenished California's reservoirs. For the first time in years, farms in the state's Central Valley don't have to rely on groundwater.

A record amount of rain and snow has replenished California's reservoirs. For the first time in years, farms in the state's Central Valley don't have to rely on groundwater.

Katie Hawkinson   

A record amount of rain and snow has replenished California's reservoirs. For the first time in years, farms in the state's Central Valley don't have to rely on groundwater.
  • Water is flowing again in California's Central Valley, an important agricultural region.
  • Record amounts of snow and rain have filled once drought-ridden lakes and waterways, replenishing key reservoirs.

After years of drought and concerns about the use of groundwater, water from California's reservoirs is finally flowing through the canals and irrigation ditches of the Central Valley, the state's agricultural hub.

Thanks to heavy rain and a snowpack this winter that was one of the largest on record, California's water supply has risen high enough to end drought declarations in several regions and, importantly, return water to key farming regions, The Washington Post reported.

This summer, in fact, marks the first time in a decade that districts in the region have been able to deposit water into depleted aquifers that supplied groundwater, the Post said.

In times of drought, Central Valley farms rely on groundwater to irrigate crops. That's not sustainable over the long term, though, because it can reduce the volume of rivers and lakes and deplete wells.

One district west of Fresno, California — the Westlands Water District — reported its highest water allocation since 2017. Over the past two years, the district received no water allocation from the state which worried farmers, a spokesperson for the district told the Post.

"It's very nice to have this option," Sarah Woolf, an irrigation consultant, told the Post. "It's a change in thinking for everyone."




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