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The Counter: How a federal drought relief program left southern Oregon parched—and contributed to the ongoing groundwater crisis in the West

 •  by Jessica Fu, The Counter

This piece is part of a collaboration that includes the Institute for Nonprofit News (INN), California Health Report, Center for Collaborative Investigative Journalism, Circle of Blue, Colorado Public Radio, Columbia Insight, The Counter, High Country News, New Mexico In Depth and SJV Water. The project was made possible by a grant from the Water Foundation…

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Drought

Where is the water going?

 •  by Lois Henry

This piece is part of a collaboration that includes the Institute for Nonprofit News (INN), California Health Report, Center for Collaborative Investigative Journalism, Circle of Blue, Colorado Public Radio, Columbia Insight, The Counter, High Country News, New Mexico In Depth and SJV Water. The project was made possible by a grant from the Water Foundation…

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Drought

UPDATE: Popular I-5 oasis has a line on water but will have to pay

 •  by Jesse Vad, SJV Water reporting intern

Kettleman City needs $375,000 to keep from going dry, possibly as early as the end of next month. The popular pitstop along Interstate 5 in Kings County between Los Angeles and San Francisco needs 214 acre feet to supply residents and keep its raft of gas stations and fast food joints open. But in this…

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Drought

How ag’s footprint has changed since the last drought

 •  by Lois Henry

In the world of farming, not all crops are equal. That is starkly apparent when looking at how crops changed in the central and southern San Joaquin Valley since the beginning of the last drought, according to county crop reports. While most counties saw reductions in overall harvested acres between 2012 and 2020, they also…

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DroughtRivers

Sierra Nevada snow flights are booking fast

 •  by Jesse Vad, SJV Water reporting intern

Demand for snow runoff forecasting is surging in the San Joaquin Valley, particularly after the past bone-dry year. Snow monitoring flights are already being tentatively scheduled by valley water districts ahead of winter. “Everybody’s anxious for the water year,” said Michael Anderson, state climatologist for California’s Department of Water Resources (DWR). “What is it going…

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Drinking WaterDrought

Lack of water dries up new housing in rural communities

 •  by Jesse Vad, SJV Water reporting trainee

Water has become a major roadblock to desperately needed housing in rural communities throughout the San Joaquin Valley. Water scarcity and lack of infrastructure has scared off developers just when housing is most needed, according to officials and nonprofits that work on both water and housing. “The lack of development interest has a lot to…

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Drinking WaterDrought

Drought could dry up popular I-5 oasis

 •  by Jesse Vad, SJV Water reporting trainee

Kettleman City, a popular stop for travelers on Interstate 5 with its host of gas stations and fast food joints, is on the brink of going dry. If that happens, those businesses could shut down. Lawmakers and others are trying to work out a fix but so far, things are moving slowly. “If they don’t…

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Drinking WaterDrought

Summer of 2021, another dry-well-a-palooza

 •  by Jesse Vad, SJV Water reporting intern

Phones were ringing practically non-stop at Self-Help Enterprises toward the end of this summer with valley residents all calling about the same problem: Their wells had gone dry. Employees were fielding 100s of calls a month from people whose wells had dried up, Marliez Diaz wrote in an email. Diaz is a water sustainability manager…

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