Headline RoundupApril 28th, 2022

Southern California Declares Emergency as Western US Faces Ongoing Drought

Summary from the AllSides News Team

Large swaths of the western U.S. have faced “extreme” drought conditions and water restrictions for months. On Wednesday, southern California’s water supplier declared a water shortage emergency. 

Responding to what officials called an “unprecedented” crisis, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California asked businesses and residents to limit outdoor watering to one day per week. “We don’t have enough water supplies right now to meet normal demand. The water is not there,” one official said. 

While areas of “extreme” drought are widespread, some parts of Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Nevada and Oregon are experiencing a higher level of “exceptional” drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. Lake Mead, an important water source for parts of Arizona and Nevada, fell to historically low water levels and exposed an intake valve that had remained submerged since its installation in 1971. This trend is not unique to the U.S.; it was reported in early April that severe drought threatened livestock in Ethiopia

While several left-rated outlets featured original coverage, major right-rated outlets used wire service articles from Associated Press (Center bias) to cover the California drought. Some coverage in left-rated outlets discussed climate change in the first paragraph of articles; original coverage from right-rated outlets often did not mention climate change at all. 

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