Parched Californians’ Lukewarm Response to Free Water

Last Weekend, South Pasadena Residents Weren’t Desperate Enough to Tap a Recycled Water Source for Their Thirsty Gardens

Sometimes you can’t even give water away, even in a time of drought.

Maybe it was the rain in Southern California that week. Or maybe it was because people couldn’t be bothered to find buckets of appropriate size. Or maybe local residents just aren’t that desperate yet.

But only a handful of people showed up at South Pasadena High School this past Saturday when school district officials invited the public to carry away as much water as they wanted from the high school pool.

Californians are under their first mandatory …

Are We Heading Toward a New Dust Bowl?

Scientists Now Know That 1934 Was North America’s Worst Drought in 1,000 Years—And They Can Help Us Get Ready for the Next One

On April 15, 1935, one of the largest dust storms in U.S. history smothered Oklahoma and the Texas panhandle in a cloud thick enough to nearly blot out the noonday …

In L.A., Brown Is Beautiful Again

For 100 Years, Humans Made Southern California Green. Now, the Drought Is Returning Our Landscape to Its Rightful Color Palette.

Droughts in California are always seen as exceptional, even though they are common events, part of our natural climate pattern. So will our state really be changed by the current …

Dead Lawns and Two-Minute Showers

Learning to Love Water Rationing in Santa Cruz

As another disappointing rainy season drew to a close this spring, I began a new household chore. I walked across the parched and withered remnants of our front lawn and …

Could This Drought Bring Californians Together?

Australia’s Last Dry Spell Lasted Over a Decade. It Required Us All to Share the Burden.

As an Australian, I have been taught from birth the value of water. In school, history lessons always included details of early explorers who died of thirst, such as Robert …

What Drought? California Has Plenty of Water.

Looking to a Future Where We Drink More Wastewater and Ocean Water—Treated, Of Course

The cliché about Californians is that when asked where their water comes from, they say “the tap” or “plastic bottles,” said Sierra Magazine editor-in-chief and Occidental College adjunct professor Bob …