Feds’ Central Valley Project Expects to Send No Water to California Farms This Year, Little to Cities

After an extraordinarily dry start to the year, the federal government announced Wednesday that most farms in California will likely receive no water from the state’s biggest reservoirs in 2022, the latest fallout from drought and a blow to an agricultural industry already crippled by tight supplies. Cities and towns, meanwhile, will get just a fraction of the water they requested.

An impending third straight year of drought has left California’s federally managed reservoirs, including giant Shasta and Trinity lakes, soiled by cracked earth and “bathtub rings,” and standing as striking images of the state’s aridity. Many of the storage sites are at near-record lows for this point in the wet winter season, and officials at the Bureau of Reclamation say there’s just not enough water for everyone who needs it.