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FROM THIS EPISODE

On the same day California's water authority votes on how much we'll have to cut back, we look at the cautionary tale found in Saudi Arabia's farming sector. Then, why the Salton Sea is an environmental disaster waiting to happen, and what's being done about it. And finally, we hear from L.A. City Attorney Mike Feuer on his new lawsuit against Wells Fargo Bank, plus a primer on the bank's history of misbehavior.

Photo: The impact of drought at the Salton Sea (Gentle)

Producers:
Jolie Myers
Matt Holzman
Anna Scott
Christian Bordal

Saudi Arabia's Water Woes, a Cautionary Tale 13 MIN, 29 SEC

California's water authority is voting today on how much we'll have to cut back. And it's going to be a lot more than we've cut so far. New figures show that in March, residents in the state cut back by just 3.5 percent, far lower than the Governor's mandated 25 percent. Agriculture, meanwhile, is a different story. Water from the snow pack and federal authorities has been slashed, so farmers are increasingly pumping water from underground. Some farmers have dug so deep, they're hitting water that fell to the earth tens of thousands of years ago. Turns out that's what Saudi Arabia did too; now that country is giving up on farming. We hear what could be a cautionary tale for California.

Guests:
Nathan Halverson, Center for Investigative Reporting (@eWords)

The Salton Sea's Impending Disaster 14 MIN, 37 SEC

Saudi Arabia, of course, isn't the only place where engineering brought water to the desert. Here in California, we accidentally created the state's largest lake back in 1905 after the Colorado River broke through a dam. The Salton Sea covers 380 square miles of otherwise parched land in the Imperial and Coachella Valleys. At first, it was a happy accident. In the 50's and 60's celebrities and vacationers flocked there. But now, with the drought, the Salton Sea is drying up, which could create a huge environmental disaster. What's being done to stop it?

Guests:
Dana Goodyear, New Yorker magazine (@newyorker)

Wells Fargo Bank Sued by L.A. 9 MIN, 9 SEC

California-based Wells Fargo Bank with its folksy stage-coach logo is being accused of highway robbery. Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer filed a lawsuit accusing the bank of employing shady, high-pressure sales tactics - such as opening bogus bank accounts - to juice its sales. What are the details of the allegations, and what is Wells Fargo's overall track record when it comes to customer shadiness?

Guests:
Mike Feuer, Los Angeles City Attorney (@Mike_Feuer)
Gretchen Morgenson, New York Times

Reckless Endangerment

Gretchen Morgenson

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