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Posted Tue Mar 24 2009: from Wall Street Journal:
Drought Turns Water Into a Cash Crop
... After three years of drought in California, water is now a potential cash crop. Last fall, the state activated its Drought Water Bank program for the first time since 1994. Under the program, farmers can choose to sell some of the water they would usually use to grow their crops to parched cities, counties and agriculture districts. Water -- or the lack of it -- has been costing the state dearly. According to Richard Howitt, a professor at the University of California, Davis, the drought and resulting water restrictions could cost as much as $1.4 billion in lost income and about 53,000 lost jobs, mostly in the agriculture sector.
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