Gov. Jerry Brown declared a drought state of emergency Friday morning amid one of California's driest winters on record.
"We are in a unprecedented, very serious situation, and people should pause and reflect on how dependent we are on the rain, on nature and one another," he told a room full of reporters in San Francisco.
Brown called for a collaborative effort to restrain water use, urging Californians to conserve in every way possible.
"I'm also setting in motion easier water transfers so a farmer who really needs water — who's willing to pay for it — can get it from another farmer who doesn't necessarily need it," he said.
Under the declaration, state water officials have more flexibility to manage California's water supply amid drought conditions, a statement from his office said.
Just Thursday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture named 27 California counties primary natural disaster areas due to recent drought.
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