28 Feb 2009

California water crisis after third dry winter

9:04 pm on 28 February 2009

A state of emergency has been declared in California because of a severe drought.

The announcement was made by California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger after three dry winters reduced the state's reservoirs to their lowest levels since 1992.

Farmers have been particularly badly hit in California, which is the America's largest producer of food and agricultural products.

Saying that the drought is having a "devastating impact", Mr Schwarzenegger urged people to cut water consumption by a fifth or face compulsory cuts.