Gov. Jerry Brown warns of 'mega-drought' in California

Brown declared drought emergency this month

SAN DIEGO - California Gov. Jerry Brown says the state's dry spell could turn into a mega-drought.

"Make no mistake ... this drought is a big wake-up call," said Brown.

The latest drought map released Thursday does not look good. This is the driest California has been since 1884.

Brown said, "We know going back in history, there have been some very, very long droughts they call mega-droughts and we might well be in one of those."

More than half of San Diego County is in a severe drought. On the map, almost 70 percent of the state shaded in bright red is in extreme drought.

For the first time in 15 years, parts of California are in the highest level called "exceptional drought."

Seventeen water agencies across the state are in danger of going dry in the next 60 to 100 days. Brown said he's asked the president for help with moving water from Southern California to dry areas, if needed.

"We have to really use technology and self restraint and creativity," said Brown.

"In this case, again, to use the infrastructure that we have to move water around, aqueducts from one region to another," said Dr. Peter Gleick of the Pacific Institute in Oakland, Calif.

If it gets worse, Gleick told 10News, "We may see having to move water in tanker trucks to small, rural communities that don't have any other choices."

The White House issued a statement after President Obama had a conversation with Brown Wednesday. It read, in part: "The president reinforced his commitment to providing the necessary federal support to the state and local efforts."

On Jan. 17, Brown declared a drought emergency and asked everyone to cut back on water usage at least 20 percent.

Print this article Back to Top