California raises water allocation for farmers, cities |

California raises water allocation for farmers, cities

SACRAMENTO ” Deciding to draw water from the Sierra, the state is boosting summer water deliveries for 25 million Californians and 750,000 acres of farmland thanks to late spring storms this month.

The Department of Water Resources is increasing water allocations through the State Water Project from 30 percent to 40 percent. Even with the increase, state water contractors will get little more than a third of what they had requested from state-operated reservoirs.

Lake Oroville, the state’s main reservoir, is at 64 percent of its capacity. That’s 25 percent below average.

Since 1968, only three years have had lower allocations: 35 percent in 2008, 39 percent in 2001 and 30 percent in 1991.

Water Resources Director Lester Snow says they’ll have to make up the rest with groundwater, conservation or cutting water use.

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