Among a broad range of crop products, California’s greenhouse and nursery products rank at the top of the list. Grapes, almonds, lettuce, and strawberries round out the top five most valuable California crops.”
As the State tries to deal with the lack of water, there are several communities that currently have no water at all. Zero, zilch, nothing. The State is pushing residents to cut water use by 28-32% or face increasing fines and fees. This is causing a major push against the agriculture industry. Some farmers have stopped producing crops all together because it is more profitable for them to sell their water rights to other farmers. Some farmers who do not have water rights and cannot afford to purchase water are either going out of business or simply not planting this season. The drought does not affect crops alone, this will spread to the poultry, dairy, and livestock industry as well. If you don’t think California’s agriculture and livestock industry will impact the rest of the world or the country, you’re wrong.
The Federal Government is working with 33 States to try to contain the worst Bird Flu outbreak in our nations history. The article cites 33 million as the number of birds being culled, but the last number I heard on the radio was 40 million. If this outbreak is not contained over the Summer it could likely be made exponentially worse in the fall as millions of migratory birds pass through the flyways potentially spreading the virus.
I was reading an interesting story today about ISIS setting fire to a major Iraqi oil refinery and the potential consequences for the rest of the world if ISIS captures another major oil field. They certainly have the capability to do so. A lacking Iraqi military and an unwilling US Coalition, to me, means this situation is unavoidable. I remember in 2006(ish) when gas prices in California rose to $5 a gallon and diesel rose to $7 a gallon. Many truckers stopped hauling because they could barely break even. At $8 a gallon for diesel, they (the talking heads) estimated that no trucks would haul goods. Think about that.. NO TRUCKS would haul any goods of any kind because to do so, they would lose money with each trip. It takes time for market prices to react to this kind of disruption so a temporary cease in delivery services to grocery stores would be unavoidable. Consider still, in the State’s effort to recoup tax money lost to fuel efficiency they have increased taxes primarily on diesel fuel. Diesel is now in many cases MORE expensive than gasoline even though it is cheaper to produce!
Looking at these issues individually, they are all potentially very bad things. When you start to look at them collectively you start to see the bigger picture. This is what those of you reading this must be able to do. I recently read a very good book by Fernando Aguirre “FerFAL” where he gives advice from having survived the economic collapse in Argentina. One of the things he mentions is, if he could do one thing differently he would’ve had more food. “There’s no reason why you can’t have 6 months – 1 year of food in a first world nation where food is cheap.”