FRESNO, Calif. — Farmers have hung more plastic banners along highways in California's Central Valley, protesting federal environmental regulations that they say have limited their water for irrigation.
The signs draped across fences and cotton trailers on Highway 99 and Interstate 5 between San Francisco and Los Angeles proclaim: "Man-made drought" and "Congress-created dust bowl."
But they strike some as a little odd in a year of heavy rains and a formidable Sierra snowpack. California's three-year drought is officially over, and most farmers are getting all their contracted irrigation water.
Also, a Congressional Research Service report found most of the water cuts were due to the drought and not to environmental restrictions.
Still, farmers like Joe Marchini say the signs are needed to remind people of their ongoing problems with access to water.