Sustaining California Agriculture in an Uncertain Future
Published: July 22, 2009
Authors: Heather Cooley, Peter Gleick, Juliet Christian-Smith
The report Sustaining California Agriculture in an Uncertain Future shows that California agriculture can flourish despite diminishing water supply and future uncertainty from climate change, but it will require great strides in increasing the water efficiency of the agricultural sector.
Many farmers and irrigation districts have already been making water-use efficiency improvements. Yet the analysis estimates that potential water savings of 4.5 – 6 million acre-feet each year can be achieved by expanding the use of efficient irrigation technologies and management practices.
Download the Executive Summary
Download the full report
View the Agricultural Community Profiles
View the Press Release
California Success Stories: Sierra Orchards
Federal Conservation Programs Help Farmers Become More Efficient
Watch this video to learn more about Sierra Orchards in Winters, California–one of the early adopters of water conservation and efficiency practices featured in this report. This is the first in a series of California success stories in agricultural water use to be released March 2010.
Read the transcription of the extended interview with Craig McNamara (PDF).
Comparison of Water Quantities
For an average water year, the water conservation and efficiency practices identified in this Pacific Institute report have the potential to save 5.6 million acre-feet of water, equivalent to:
This savings represents around 17% of all of the water used by agriculture in California.