The Carmel River has been the Monterey Peninsula’s primary source of water for more than a century. That will come to an end on Jan. 1, 2022. The State Water Resources Control Board has ordered the area’s private water utility, California American Water (Cal Am), to reduce its draws from the river by two-thirds of what it pumped a decade ago.
Businesses across the Monterey Bay are suffering a critical shortage of workers in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. The hospitality industry normally employs 26,000 people on the peninsula. But now, many restaurants, hotels and retail shops are struggling to operate, often lacking over a third of their pre-pandemic workforce.