…California’s ongoing drought has hit the region hard, reducing grape yields and depleting the vast aquifer that most of the area’s vineyards and rural residents rely on as their sole source of water other than rain. Across the region, residential and vineyard wells have gone dry.
Those who can afford to — including a number of large wineries and growers — have drilled ever-deeper wells, igniting tensions and leading some to question whether …burgeoning wine industry is sustainable.
“All of our water is being turned purple and shipped out of here in green glass…”
Unlike other states that treat groundwater as a shared resource subject to regulation and monitoring, California’s Gold Rush-era rules have generally allowed property owners to drill wells on their land and suck out as much water as they want.
“It’s a matter of who has the longest straw at the bottom of the bucket…”
by Lisa Baertlein
June 19, 2015
© 2015 Reuters
Read the complete article on the Reuters website:
Water Wars in California’s Coastal Wine Country