This summer, even drinking water may be hard to find in some central California towns. This region is in its third year of drought, among the worst in recorded history.
Yet agribusinesses are planting huge new groves of thirsty almond and pistachio trees. Bear in mind, these are permanent plantings. A quick crop such as alfalfa can be plowed under during a water crisis. Trees and vines, on the other hand, need years to mature. An acre could be a $3 million investment.