Almonds Fish and a Modern Dust Bowl: Narratives of Drought Vulnerability and Adaption in California’s San Joaquin Valley

Project Dates

California is in its fourth year of an extreme drought. Warm temperatures and lack of rainfall have led to decreased snowpack critical for water use by cities and agriculture. The investigator interviewed different agricultural stakeholders to understand how drought impacts and drought vulnerability are experienced in California’s San Joaquin Valley. These interviews helped outline four main environmental narratives that frame how physical and social factors produce and intensify drought vulnerability for rural farming communities in the valley. While the different narratives identify different drought "villains," such as environmental regulations or farmers, they hold in common an understanding that investment in agriculture and rural communities is necessary to address drought vulnerability for future droughts in the region.