Community Water Center

Community-driven water solutions through organizing, education, and advocacy

The California Drought Isn’t Over, It Just Went Underground

By Mark Grossi 

Read the Full Story HERE

In the wake of 2016's abnormally wet winter, many have begun to think that the drought is over, and that its ramifications remain a thing of the past. However, as Mark Grossi argues, many of California's most vulnerable communities remain out of clean and safe water, as wells have run dry and the race to dig deeper continues. 

For those who live in some of California's most vulnerable communities, swelling rivers and tributaries filled to the brim mean relatively little. Relying heavily on private wells, those who reside in small, rural, and/or aging communities face a host of problems that precipitation cannot remedy. 

Despite the passage of legislation in 2014 that would provide financial assistance for groundwater pumping, it is expected that it will take upwards of two decades for those who are affected to receive help. Community Water Center's own Jenny Rempel argues that the "end of the drought" messaging provides a platform for further discussion about inequality and resource disparities. Funds seem to be in their own sort of drought, and, according to Rempel, is something that must be attended to. "And what will happen should any new homes run out of water during the next year? “There is not nearly enough funding for everyone with a dry well to get a grant or even loan assistance since the existing funding is massively oversubscribed.” 

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