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The California Drought Problem

Decent Essays
The environmental issue to be considered is the water consumption of the state of California and how this consumption has been influenced by the most recent historical drought from 2011 to 2016. Conditions are improving, but unfortunately, California is not completely in the clear (Miller, 2017). The main cause of the drought cannot be determined (Valentine, 2015), but what is known is that a mass of warm water in the Pacific Ocean has prevented rainfall from reaching the state (Klusinske, 2015). California is a major agricultural state, producing two-thirds of the nation’s fruits and nuts as well as one-third of the vegetables grown, while producing over 400 commodities in total (California Department of Food and Agriculture [CDFA], 2015).…show more content…
What Charles Iceland shows is that the impacts of these droughts are profound, especially for the poor, and that many of the nations, like California, do not have proper management practices to allow for sustainable use and this lack of management puts the citizens of these nations at continued risk. Further examples are seen across the globe, and a common theme is that agricultural communities are hit hardest, and that the droughts are causing other issues, such as having an influence on military conflicts, amplifying malnourishment, and causing the increased spread of diseases (Mosbergen, 2017; “Hundreds Dying From Hunger as Severe Drought Grips Somalia” 2017; “State of Emergency in Bolivia Amid Worst Drought in 25 Years”, 2016). It is clearly evidenced from these examples, including California, that a local drought does not only impact the nation in which it occurs, as the global nature of trade allows the influences of a drought to be widespread (Koba,…show more content…
Scoville argues that their needs to be an implementation of governmental policies to allow Californians to reshape their relationship with nature to have sustainable water use. Stephanie Pincetl and Terri S. Hogue (2015) demonstrate that there is a dramatic difference in public perception of water and water use and that those who are the wealthiest are not as compelled to change their behaviors despite the fact that it is the wealthy who use up to three times more water. Pincetl and Hogue (2015) also show that it is a lack of strict policy that allows for inefficient use of water while allowing those who are already suffering to suffer further. Lewis Coser (1957) argues that conflict is essential to bringing about social change, and that it is stimulatory to the technological and economic realms of society as it pushes for innovation and prevents a stagnate state of being. Out of the conflict over water use in California can come technological and political innovation that can help to alleviate this conflict. The normal response for California is crisis-driven responses, but it has been shown that these policies increase vulnerability, and certain strategies in one sector have a negative impact on other
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