On January 17, 2014, California Governor Brown declared a drought state of emergency and directed state officials to take all necessary actions. In response, on March 13, 2014, the Alameda County Water District (ACWD) Board of Directors declared a water shortage emergency in Fremont, Newark, and Union City and adopted a Water Shortage Emergency Ordinance that includes mandatory water use restrictions.
On July 15, 2014, the State Water Resources Control Board approved an Emergency Regulation for Statewide Urban Water Conservation, mandating that all urban water agencies implement water conservation plans. Starting August 1, 2014, water restriction violations are considered criminal infractions, punishable by fines of up to $500 a day. The State Water Board has prepared a Fact Sheet on the adopted regulations for reference.
On April 1, 2015, the governor issued Executive Order B-29-15, ordering the State Water Resources Control Board to impose restrictions to achieve a 25 percent reduction in potable urban water usage through February 28, 2016; directing the California Department of Water Resources to lead a statewide initiative, in partnership with local agencies, to collectively replace 50 million square feet of lawns and ornamental turf with drought tolerant landscapes; and directing the California Energy Commission to implement a statewide appliance rebate program to provide monetary incentives for the replacement of inefficient household devices.
On November 13, 2015, the governor issued Executive Order B-36-15, stating that if drought conditions persist beyond January 2016, the restrictions imposed by Executive Order B-29-15 would be extended through October 31, 2016. On February 2, 2016 the State Water Resources Control Board adopted this extended and revised Emergency Regulation. A public workshop will be held on April 20, 2016 to solicit input on potential adjustments to the February 2016
Emergency Regulation for consideration and possible action by the State Water Board
in May 2016.
ACWD Drought Resources
ACWD has put together a comprehensive Drought Resource Center offering information and resources on a variety of topics to consumers, including:
CaliforniaDrought.org CaliforniaDrought.org is a project of the Pacific Institute, a nonprofit based in Oakland, California dedicated to researching and finding solutions to freshwater issues. The website compiles tools, research, and information on the drought to help California understand, plan for, and find sustainable water management solutions.
U.S. Drought Portal
The National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) created the U.S. Drought Portal as an information hub on current drought conditions and drought forecasting throughout the country.
U.S. Drought Monitor
The U.S. Drought Monitor, established in 1999, is a weekly map of drought conditions that is produced jointly by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the National Drought Mitigation Center (NDMC) at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.