President Obama has been visiting a farm in California’s Central Valley to see for himself the damage caused by one of the driest years on record in the state.
More than 90 percent of California has been classed as being in “severe” drought.
Obama has promised millions of dollars in aid and said that with climate change now a recognised phenomenon the US needed to be better prepared:
“The planet is slowly going to keep warming for a long time to come. So we’re going to have to stop looking at these disasters as something to wait for, we’ve got to start looking at these disasters as something to prepare for, to anticipate.”
The state produces half of the US’s fruit and vegetable stock.
Reservoirs have fallen to below 20% of their normal levels and California’s state water project has said it will not be able to meet the demand for millions of people.