SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. -

Governor Jerry Brown proclaimed a State of Emergency and directed state officials to take all necessary actions to prepare for drought conditions.

"We can't make it rain, but we can be much better prepared for the terrible consequences that California's drought now threatens, including dramatically less water for our farms and communities and increased fires in both urban and rural areas, said Governor Brown. "I've declared this emergency and I'm calling all Californians to conserve water in every way possible."

In the State of Emergency declaration, Governor Brown directed state officials to assist farmers and communities that are economically impacted by dry conditions and to ensure the state can respond if Californians face drinking water shortages. The Governor also directed state agencies to use less water and hire more firefighters and initiated a greatly expanded water conservation public awareness campaign. More information: Save our Water

Read the Governor's full proclamation

Worst droughts in U.S. history

POSTED: 08:23 AM PDT Jul 16, 2012    UPDATED: 07:04 AM PST Feb 14, 2014 

Drought aid is on the way for California, currently in the midst of one of the driest spells on record. Take a look at the worst droughts in U.S. history.

Worst Droughts - Generic
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President Barack Obama is traveling to California and announce a new federal initiative aimed at helping farms and communities there in the grips of a devastating drought. Here are some other memorable dry spells through the years.