Tag Archives: agriculture

Capturing El Niño for the underground

By Philip Bachand, Helen Dahlke, William Horwath, Thomas Harter and Toby O’Geen A much-anticipated “Godzilla” El Niño this winter may refill California’s drought-diminished reservoirs, but it won’t do much to restock the severely depleted aquifers we rely upon to get … Continue reading

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Drought bites harder, but agriculture remains robust

Spanish version By Richard Howitt, Duncan MacEwan, Josué Medellín-Azuara and Jay Lund Today we release our second annual report estimating the economic impacts from prolonged drought. More than anything, the results of our 16-page analysis of the current growing season … Continue reading

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Harsher drought impacts forecast for California agriculture

By Richard Howitt, Duncan MacEwan, Josué Medellín-Azuara, Jay Lund and Daniel A. Sumner The drought is expected to be worse for California’s agricultural economy this year because of reduced water availability, according to our preliminary estimates released today. The study, summarized below, … Continue reading

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Jobs per drop irrigating California crops

By Josué Medellín-Azuara, Jay Lund and Richard Howitt Some of the most popular drought stories lately have been on the amount of what water needed to produce food from California, as a consumer sees it — a single almond, a head of … Continue reading

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Dollars and drops per California crop

By Josué Medellín-Azuara and Jay Lund When it comes to water, California’s irrigated agriculture is always under the public magnifying glass because it is the largest managed water use in the state and the economic base for many rural areas. … Continue reading

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Weathering the drought by drawing down the bank

By Richard Howitt, Josué Medellín-Azuara, Duncan MacEwan and Jay Lund Today, UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences economists join the California Department of Food and Agriculture in releasing a second, more comprehensive and forward-looking report estimating the effects of the … Continue reading

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Why California’s agriculture needs groundwater management

California’s agricultural prosperity increasingly depends on groundwater availability during drought. Global markets favoring high-value nuts, fruits and wine grapes are fueling a steady conversion of farmland from annual crops and pasture to orchards and vineyards. The growing profitability of these … Continue reading

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Severe drought impacts to Central Valley agriculture forecast this year

By Richard Howitt, Josué Medellín-Azuara, Duncan MacEwan and Jay Lund This year’s drought will have severe impacts on irrigated agriculture in California’s Central Valley. To estimate this impact, we updated and applied the Statewide Agricultural Production (SWAP) model for estimated cutbacks in … Continue reading

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Paradox on the Plains: As water efficiency increases, so can water use

By C.-Y. Cynthia Lin Groundwater and water conservation are critical issues in California and globally. Many of the world’s most productive agricultural regions depend on groundwater and have experienced unsustainable declines in water levels. In many places, policymakers have attempted … Continue reading

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A sweet spot for farms and fish on a floodplain

By Richard Howitt and Josué Medellín-Azuara For decades, Sacramento area freeway commuters have been treated to a carousel of contrasting landscapes as they cross a vast floodplain known as the Yolo Bypass. The carousel rotates by the season. In wet … Continue reading

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