Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday officially declared that California is in a drought emergency, as the state struggled with the lowest-levels of rainfall in its 153-year history, reservoirs were at low levels and firefighters remained on high alert.
"We are in an unprecedented, very serious situation," Brown said.
The governor asked Californians to reduce their water consumption by 20 percent. In practical terms, the drought declaration streamlines the rules for water agencies to transfer extra water from one part of the state to another. It also raises public awareness.