L.A. Is Drowning in Its Own Water Pretensions

Civic Leaders' Fantastical Claims of Water Self-Sufficiency May Endanger Southern California's Real Water Supplies

This time, “Chinatown” is fooling itself.

Los Angeles has a long history of water deceptions, a point made famously by Roman Polanski’s 1974 neo-noir film. But the massive self-sabotage of the city’s latest scheme is a real doozy. L.A.—from elected officials to environmentalists—has convinced itself of the hokum that it has all the water it needs.

Let me be clear: L.A. needs to produce much more of its own water for its long-term resilience and security. And leading Angelenos are right to ramp up stormwater capture, groundwater clean-up, recycling, and conservation so …

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Can a Public University Fix a City’s Achilles Heel?

UCLA Is Mobilizing Its Brains and Its Muscle to Make L.A. Energy and Water Independent

Can a university really help make its home city 100 percent independent on water and energy?

In Los Angeles, we’re going to find out. UCLA, where I’ve spent almost 50 years …

Could L.A. Become a River City?

Neighborhoods in the City's Northeast and San Fernando Valley Ripple with Opportunities for Housing, Offices, and Parks

Could Los Angeles become a river city?

All the progress in revitalizing the Los Angeles River has presented the city with a special opportunity: to develop the communities along the river, …

Southern California’s Reservoirs Are Fuller Than You Think

It's Hard to Watch Boats Glide Over a 40-Billion-Gallon Lake and Feel Despair

On a recent trip to Wyoming, I was talking to one of the locals about the drought back home in Southern California. She had heard that it was so bad …

Six Ways We Can Keep the World From Drying Up

As Water Disappears, These New Techniques Will Help Us Stave Off Perpetual Drought

Early last year, Californians, already deep in their state’s drought panic, confronted a depressing statistic. Governor Jerry Brown had called for cities and towns to voluntarily cut down on water …

A California Painter Laments the Drying Landscape

As the Drought Rages on, an Artist Struggles to Find Inspiration Among Shriveled Poppies and Ankle-Deep Rivers

As an outdoor landscape and seascape painter, I’m used to seeing places change over the years. I painted a stately cottonwood tree on an Owens Valley country lane in the …