Environment & Science

California farmers get full water supply, first time in years

In this file photo, blackbirds fly over an irrigation canal on April 17, 2009 near Firebaugh, California. A federally run system of reservoirs and canals provides water to irrigate roughly one-third of California's farmland.
In this file photo, blackbirds fly over an irrigation canal on April 17, 2009 near Firebaugh, California. A federally run system of reservoirs and canals provides water to irrigate roughly one-third of California's farmland.
David McNew/Getty Images

Farmers in a vast region of California will receive their fully contracted amount of irrigation water this year for the first time in more than a decade.

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation announced the allocation on Tuesday following one of California's wettest winters in years. It comes days after Gov. Jerry Brown lifted the years-long drought emergency for most of the state.

The federally run system of reservoirs and canals provides water to irrigate roughly one-third of California's farmland.

California leads the nation in agriculture, producing nearly half the nation's fruits, nuts and vegetables.

Pablo Arroyave, of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, says everybody should be careful not to waste water. He says the next drought could be around the corner.