A new report by UC Davis puts into facts and figures what many of us have been saying. The drought here in California will have a tremendous economic impact on communities around the state. A study by UC Davis focused on the Central Valley area and found the drought could cost the industry 1.7 billion dollars, and cost more than 14,500 workers to lose their jobs. Researchers estimated that the Central Valley irrigators would receive only two-thirds of their normal river water deliveries this year.
The Central Valley is the richest food-producing region of the world. Much of the nation’s fresh fruits, nuts and vegetables are grown in the region’s 7 million acres of irrigated farmland. The analysis predicted several severe impacts for the current growing season including reduced surface water deliveries of 6.5 million acre feet of water. Fallowing of an additional 410,000 acres representing about six percent of irrigated cropland in the Central Valley. Keep this in mind, of those jobs only about 6,400 are directly involved in crop production. About 60 percent of the economic losses will occur in the San Joaquin Valley and the Tulare Lake Basin. The center plans to release a more comprehensive report of the droughts economic impact on the state’s irrigated agriculture this summer.
To read the entire report, please CLICK HERE.