When Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti issued some of the most sweeping citywide water reforms in history today, it included this haunting line: "Our major supplier of imported water expects to curtail supplies in the next 12 months." While the drought is about to change life drastically in LA, it's already crippled the lives of the Central Valley residents featured in this beautiful short film.

In this week's issue of the New Yorker, Dana Goodyear visits the agricultural center of the state to confront the reality of the drought. Her prose is complemented by the photos of Matt Black and Ed Kashi, who also created this video. Narrated by the farmers and sheepherders who are seeing their livelihoods evaporate into dust, it's perhaps the most achingly honest look at what's really happening in the part of California that most people simply drive through on their way to San Francisco or LA. Among the more startling revelations is the fact that some farms have resorted to purchasing water—purchasing water!—just to keep their businesses alive. No matter where you live, or how dire your own situation is, these images will spur you to take action. [New Yorker]


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