Snow Study shows California faces serious drought

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – A new survey of California winter snows on Thursday showed the most populous state is facing one of the worst droughts in its history, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said.

The state, which produces about half the United States’ vegetables and fruit, is in its third year of drought and its main system supplying water to cities and farms may only be able to fulfill 15 percent of requests, scientists said.

The snowpack on California’s mountains is carrying only 61 percent of the water of normal years, according to the survey by the state Department of Water Resources. Last year the snowpack held 111 percent of the normal amount of water, but spring was the driest ever recorded.

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