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McCarthy Says Newsom ‘Has Failed When It Comes To Water’ As California Faces Drought
House Minority Leader McCarthy Speaks During Weekly Press Conference WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 29: House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) answers questions during a press conference at the U.S. Capitol on July 29, 2022 in Washington, DC. During the press conference, McCarthy said he had no recollection of speaking with former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson on January 6, 2020. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) Win McNamee / Staff
Photo by Win McNamee/Staff/Getty Images via Getty Images

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, whose district is in California, called out Democratic Governor of California Gavin Newsom on Sunday over his handling of the ongoing drought in the state.

“I think Gavin Newsom has failed when it comes to water,” McCarthy told Fox News. “California has a long history from droughts to very rainy and snow pack years. The problem is a drought is always going to come in the future, it’s what do you do in the other years?”

“They haven’t built any new water storage. No new dams. They don’t have any desal[ination],” he continued. “They continue to let water go out into the ocean. So in a drought year, you do not have the reservoirs to be able to supply the water that’s needed.”

Currently, 97.5% of the state is in severe drought, with 59.8% experiencing extreme drought.

Farmers have been facing a devastating drought in much of the state, and Sam Parnagian, a California Central Valley farmer, told the outlet that farms are being harmed by the situation.

The state produces much of the country’s crops, with more than a third of the nation’s vegetables, and two-thirds of its fruits and nuts being grown in the Golden State. However, all of that could change in the future.

“You’ll go see tens of thousands of acres that used to have nuts, almonds, pistachios … and they’re just bare,” Parnagian told Fox News. “It’s just all dust.”

Some farmers in the Central Valley of California have left a lot of their land fallow, or uncultivated, due to a lack of water. Coming water restrictions, known as the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, will also add to the lack of available water for farms to use in coming years.

Erik Ekdahl, the California State Water Resources Control Board’s deputy director for water rights, told the outlet he “think[s] the state has actually done some remarkably good planning and preparation and implementation for drought.”

McCarthy pointed out how Newsom should have been using the time when there was no drought to get ready for dry conditions.

“You should store it in the abundant years to have it for the years coming forward when it comes to drought,” McCarthy said. “That would show you good management.”

McCarthy referenced practices that many farmers and residents of California have criticized, which allow for certain environmental policies to be prioritized for water over communities.

“We’ve got to have better management when it comes to the water itself,” McCarthy said. “You’ve got an administration that picks fish over people and that just allows water to go out to the ocean instead of coming down to the Valley and to southern California where we can use that to supply for farming to make sure our food is safe and secure, but also southern California for people themselves.”

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