Farmland In California Could Be Underwater For Years

By Tyler Durden

A conveyor belt of atmospheric river storms has refilled a once-dormant California lake, putting some of the nation’s most important farmland at risk as it is now underwater.

Central California’s Tulare Lake is refilled for the first time in four decades. Jeffrey Mount, a senior fellow at the Water Policy Center of the Public Policy Institute of California, told NBC News it could take at least a year for the water in the lakebed to evaporate.

“We are still going to have a Tulare Lake next year,” Mount said. 

An onslaught of snow and rain from dozens of storms that battered California early this year has caused upwards of $5 billion in damage between December 2022 and March 2023, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

As cropland remains underwater, there are increasing risks of significant agricultural losses.

NASA’s Aqua satellite shows the progression of flooding in the Tulare Lake basin over the last several months.

“Flooding in the lakebed is likely to continue into 2024, which will affect residents and farmers in the area, as well as some of the most productive cropland in the Central Valley. The lakebed contains farms that produced cotton, tomatoes, dairy, safflower, pistachios, wheat, and almonds,” the space agency said.

United States Department of Agriculture meteorologist Brad Rippey told Bussiness Insider earlier this month, “While it’s unclear how deep Tulare Lake is now, if it’s similar to its former average depth of about 30 feet, that would translate to more than one trillion gallons of water that have flooded the region so far this year.”

The bad news is that a lot of the nation’s produce is sourced from the Tulare Lake Basin. Any disruption to supply will mean higher produce prices.

Source: ZeroHedge

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