California Gov. Gavin Newsom is asked residents to voluntarily cut water usage by 15% amid record temperatures and a drought in the state.  On Thursday, Newsom added nine more counties to the state’s drought emergency declaration, which now covers 50 of California’s 58 counties, adding that the water conservation request was not mandatory.

The governor suggested Californians cut water usage by taking shorter showers, only running appliances such as the dishwasher and washing machine when they are full, limiting outdoor water use and using recycled water for outdoor projects. He added that reducing water usage by 15% would save 850,000 acre-feet of water, enough to supply over 1.7 million households for one year. Newsom’s office said: “The hots are getting hotter and the dries are getting drier — that is the reality of climate change. During the last drought, we made water conservation a way of life and we can do it again.”

Editorial credit: Jose Ivan Cazares /

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