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California Weekly Update

Calif. farm groups fret over groundwater bills

Farm groups are lined up in opposition to a pair of bills in the California Legislature that would give the State Water Resources Control Board broad new powers to oversee groundwater use statewide. More

Featured Stories

LaMalfa urges Senate, Obama to act on border bills

A congressman who sits on the House of Representatives' agriculture committee is calling for President Barack Obama and the Senate to act on border... More

 

Trying to avoid ‘dead dry’

Agriculture and environmental experts say it's unlikely that California's system of water rights could be scrapped or changed overnight. But farm... More

 

Forecasters say El Nino too weak to end drought

Climate forecasters have backed off somewhat on their prediction that El Nino conditions will prevail off the coast of California this winter. While... More

California

Wildfire near Bakersfield nearly contained

Some 200 residents under evacuation orders have been allowed to return home, all road closures have been canceled and smoke is no longer affecting nearby communities. More

Calif. bond would set $100 million for water-use efficiency

California's $7.5 billion water bond proposal would provide $100 million for water use efficiency projects on farms and in cities. More

Record drought saps California honey production

The drought is worsening a worldwide shortage of honey that has pushed prices to all-time highs. Over the past eight years, the average retail price for honey has increased 65 percent from $3.83 to $6.32 per pound, according to the National Honey Board. More

Drought has state debating unregulated pumping

Two bills before lawmakers would require some local governments to start managing groundwater withdrawals, and authorize the state to step in if they fail. More

Kern families honored for century in farming

The University of California Cooperative Extension is honoring 14 families in Kern County, Calif., who've been in farming 100 years or longer. More

CCA lauds decision not to list blackbird

The California Cattlemen's Association is pleased that the state Fish and Game Commission decided not to list the tricolored blackbird as endangered or threatened -- a move farmers and ranchers say could be economically devastating. More

Wildfire near Yosemite threatens 500 structures

The fire comes as California is in the midst of its third straight year of drought, creating tinder-dry conditions that have significantly increased the fire danger around the state. More

Drought, heat take toll on almond sizes, weights

The harvest of early almond varieties is under way in California, and growers say the sizes and weights of some nuts are down. Drought, heat and disease pressure are seen as contributing to the troubles. More

Four at slaughterhouse behind beef recall indicted

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has said Rancho Feeding Corp. processed diseased and unhealthy animals and circumvented federal inspection rules. More

Emerging solar plants scorch birds in mid-air

The bird kills mark the latest instance in which the quest for clean energy sometimes has inadvertent environmental harm. Solar farms have been criticized for their impacts on desert tortoises, and wind farms have killed birds, including numerous raptors. More

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