California Drought Essay

608 Words2 Pages
Water is a vital resource used in everyday life for consumption, irrigation, and hygiene. However, there is times were a state is plagued by drought. A drought is a prolonged period of abnormally low rainfall. Based on California's massive drought and the horrible effects like shortages of water, less food production, and dangerous wildfires ; people on earth need to understand the effects and causes of a drought and learn to be better consumers of water. The USGS (United States Geological Survey) defines a drought as a period of drier-than-normal conditions that results in water-related problems. Currently, the state of California is experiencing a massive drought, facing the fourth year of its worst drought ever, with nearly 70 percent…show more content…
Declines in surface water (lakes, streams, rivers, or reservoirs) flows can be detrimental to hydropower production, navigation, and recreation. USGS states that “streamflows have been below all-time record lows for specific days of the year”. This means that water above the surface are lower than ever causing the availability of surface water to be scarce. Surface water is also measured as annual runoff which include the amount of rain, snowmelt, or evaporation from land. It supplies most of our water needs. With less surface water being available because of the drought, the choice of obtaining water from lakes or streams will slowly deplenish. Groundwater is similar to surface water, but groundwater which is found in aquifers below the surface of hte earth, is one of the state's most important natural resources. Groundwater provides drinking water for a large amount of California's population, supplies business and industries, and is used for irrigation. During a drought if a well is pumped at a faster rate than an aquifer is recharged by rain or other underground flow, water levels will decline. The long term effects can occur after five or more years of severe drought. According to USGS also states that, a long term effect is Land subsidence. Land subsidence is a gradual settling or sudden sinking of the Earth's surface. Overpumping of
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