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California governor declares end to drought emergency

Saturday, April 08, 2017 - 01:07

One of the worst droughts in California history has officially ended, Governor Jerry Brown declared on Friday, but not before it strained the state's farm economy and threatened water supplies for millions of residents. Nathan Frandino reports.

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After a wet winter in California, officials are celebrating the end of one of the state's worst droughts in history. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FELICIA MARCUS, WATER RESOURCE CONTROL BOARD, SAYING: "We knew this day would come but we wanted to make sure we got it right." Governor Jerry Brown lifted the drought declaration in all but four counties on Friday, ending most restrictions he put in place in 2014. While months of drenching storms and melting snowpack have replenished reservoirs, officials will still require some long-term water-use limits imposed last year. The state is also developing water preservation standards, including setting statewide conservation targets. (SOUNDBITE) (English) KAMYAR GUIVETCHI, DEPARTMENT OF WATER RESOURCES, SAYING: "The state actually has a 20 percent target for 2020, most water suppliers have exceeded that amount." The drought cost the agricultural economy billions of dollars, killed an estimated 100 million trees, and deprived some communities of reliable sources of drinking water. All costs that officials hope will lead people to change wasteful water habits for years to come.

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California governor declares end to drought emergency

Saturday, April 08, 2017 - 01:07