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  • 12
  • Jun
  • 2015

How Bad is The California Drought?

What You Should Know About The California Drought

The start of 2015 welcomed the start of the fourth driest year on record. While other parts of the country are dealing with severe flooding and storms, California is still dealing with dry conditions. Even with the few late winter storms, California is far from getting out of the current drought conditions.

At the end of September, the water reservoirs in California were only at 60 percent of the average storage for the time, which is just above 40 percent full. While the December storms did help, almost 80 percent of the state is still experiencing severe drought conditions that are continuing from 2014.

There were also many other factors that are making the drought even worse, such as the warm temperatures. For the first nine months of 2014, temperatures averaged 4 degrees higher than in past years. The average temperature from April to September was 70 degrees, which broke the previous record by more than half a degree.

The low snowpack levels are also adding to the extreme drought conditions that California is experiencing. The snowpack is typically used to fill reservoirs, and then pumped from underground aquifers to help provide water across the state. As of the end of December 2014, the average snowpack across the state was at just half the typical levels for that time of year. While the snowpack levels are still better than they were in January 2014, it is not enough to meet the water demands of the state.

In order for California to have a good chance of ending the drought in the coming year, climatologists are estimating that the state will have to have an average precipitation level of 150 percent of the typical level.

For more information on the current California drought, contact Enhanced Landscape Management in Thousand Oaks, California.