Fighting to prevent a California ‘dust bowl’

Don’t expect to see a reversal of a “Grapes of Wrath” movie scene, with destitute Californian farmers piling their belongings onto trucks and heading east to Oklahoma. Still, the spectre of a dustbowl in a state with a gross agricultural production normally higher than the whole of Canada is a possibility.

Large portions of California have been classified as experiencing severe or extreme drought according to the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska. Vast acreages may be laid bare without irrigation and as much as 250 tonnes of topsoil per acre may blow away, the Natural Resources Conservation Service warns.

Better Farming - JuneJuly 2009