California governor declares drought emergency

California Governor Brown unveils his proposed 2014-15 state budget in SacramentoBy Sarah McBride SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – California Governor Jerry Brown declared a drought emergency on Friday, a move that will allow the parched state to seek federal aid as it grapples with what could turn out to be the driest year in recorded state history for many areas. The dry year California experienced in 2013 has left fresh water reservoirs with a fraction of their normal reserves and slowed the normally full American River so dramatically that brush and dry riverbed are showing through in areas normally teeming with fish. “We can’t make it rain, but we can be much better prepared for the terrible consequences that California’s drought now threatens, including dramatically less water for our farms and communities and increased fires in both urban and rural areas,” Brown said in a statement. The Folsom Reservoir near Sacramento is so low that the remains of a Gold Rush-era ghost town – flooded to create the lake in the 1950s – are visible for the first time in years.

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