"California will end winter in a perilous position as record-shattering dryness converges with lagging water conservation efforts in nearly every part of the state, officials said Tuesday.
After months of cutting back, new data from the State Water Resources Control Board show that rather than conserving water, Californians increased urban water use 2.6% in January, compared to the same month in 2020 — the baseline year against which current savings are measured.
The cumulative savings from July — when Gov. Gavin Newsom called on Californians to voluntarily cut water use by 15% — to the end of January were just 6.4%, less than half the target. Officials said more must be done to prevent worst-case drought scenarios, including increased restrictions and mandatory water cuts."