Last year’s severe drought impacting much of the Western U.S. cost the state of California about $1.1 billion and nearly 8,750 full- and part-time jobs, according to researchers at the University of California Merced. Researchers also identified nearly 395,000 acres of idled land – roughly 385,000 acres in the Central Valley alone – due to predrought conditions from drought-related water cutbacks.

Conditions were much worse in 2021 compared to more recent droughts, yet the statewide impacts have not been as severe as 2015. However, if dry conditions persist through 2022, researchers say a higher tier of adaptation measures may come into play to reduce economic impacts on California agriculture and communities.

Read more on the impacts of drought on California agriculture here.