In drought-parched California, there’s a topic many private landowners remain steadfast about: ground water monitoring. During normal precipitation years, surface water found in rivers, lakes and reservoirs is able to supply roughly two-thirds of state water used annually. But during the recent dry years farmers and drillers have been digging deeper for groundwater. Groundwater may account for half of total state water consumed in drought years. The management of groundwater for the most part has been an inside issue among city water officials, agricultural guys and scientists. But in year four of California’s historic drought, ground water monitoring has exploded as everyone’s problem. In rural communities (including unincorporated pockets of Porterville California) hundreds of residents rely only on privately pumped groundwater. But now their wells are running dry, and they’re struggling to cook, clean and bathe, forcing volunteers and local officialsto install many emergency water tanks.But while Tulare County might be ground zero for the drought, groundwater management is a statewide dilemma.
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