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Gov. Newsom declares drought emergency for Mendocino, Sonoma counties

Gov. Newsom declares drought emergency for Mendocino, Sonoma counties
Posted at 1:54 PM, Apr 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-04 18:51:01-04

(AP) — The last two years have been dry in the Golden State and Wednesday Governor Gavin Newsom took executive action to help address California's drought.

The governor says the move will help build infrastructure and address climate change, And as far as funding for the actions Newsom says it’s already taken care of.

“A bond was passed a number of years ago - $7.3 billion has been appropriated. $7.3 billion since the last drought has been appropriated for all of the above strategies. $2.5 billion, by the way, for seven large storage projects in the state total.”

The governor was in Mendocino County Wednesday where he declared a drought emergency for the area. The spot where he was standing used to be 44 feet underwater.

The governor also extended the drought emergency proclamation to Sonoma County.

For now, it’s unclear what drought-related actions will be taken here in Kern.

23ABC News also spoke with a representative from the California Department of Water Resources to get a better grasp of the conditions in the state. Jeanine Jones says the last two years were exceptionally dry and that it looks like 2021 will trend in the same direction.

"One of the things we’ve noticed this year is that the streamflow of the state’s major river systems is pretty close to what we saw in 2014 and 2015, which were the two driest years of that drought. On the other hand, our snowpack was much better, not average, but much better than those two years. So Hopefully we will end up better in terms of streamflow.”

If you’re wondering why the governor only declared a drought emergency for Mendocino and Sonoma counties, Jones says that’s because the area is the driest in the state at this point. She also says that drought conditions vary across California and that just because one area is dry. It doesn’t mean others areas nearby are in the same position.