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Water Saving Goals Still In Effect

Q: With all the rain we’ve received recently, we’ve turned off our irrigation system. What else can we do to conserve during winter?


A: You’re off to a great start by turning off sprinklers; outdoor water use accounts for more than half of water use in a typical home. There are indeed other ways to save as the focus shifts to indoor water use.

El Niño Rains Only a Drop in the Bucket for Drought

The recent storms that caused major flash flooding around San Diego County were only a drop in the bucket when it comes to easing years of severe drought.


The amount of rainwater that San Diego captured in its reservoirs, while much appreciated, did not do anything to put a real dent in the five-year drought.


“So we have a long ways to go before we can see any measurable filling of those reservoirs,” Dana Friehauf, San Diego County Water Authority said.

As Rain Pummels California, Some See a Missed Opportunity for Drought Relief

Much of the torrential rain that fell on Southern California this week flowed right into the ocean, just like it did before the state’s epic drought.


That seemed like a good idea for many years, as storm drains provided a crucial defense against flooding. But with California entering what may be a fifth year of drought, water agencies are slowly moving to capture and store more of this precious resource.

Most Central Coast Reservoirs See Increase in Water Level from Week’s Storms

Several Central Coast reservoirs are gathering water from this week’s storms.

In Santa Barbara County, the Cachuma and Gibraltar Reservoirs, both at their lowest levels in decades, saw an increase in depth. Gibraltar gained about one foot, while Cachuma saw about fifth of a foot.

Gibraltar Reservoir, Santa Barbara County


The reservoirs in San Luis Obispo County are seeing increases from rainfall as well.

30 Feet in 30 Days: El Niño Storms Help Folsom Lake

Folsom Lake, one of the water storage areas in northern California, rose almost 30 feet in just 30 days. The increase was thanks in big part to the recent series of storms, bringing multiple days of rain to the Central Valley.


According to the National Weather Service, Folsom Lake rose steadily at the end of December, then took a sharp increase starting December 22. Folsom Lake is now at 52 percent of average for this date.

Lawmaker Wants To Throw the Checkbook at California Water Hogs

A California lawmaker is dramatically raising the stakes in water management, proposing fines that could reach thousands of dollars a day and public shaming of people who use too much.


Legislation introduced this week would require the state’s 411 urban water districts to set local limits on household water consumption during drought emergencies.

First ‘Textbook’ El Niño Rains Provide Clues on Possible Damage to Come

The first major El Niño storm system finished its path through Southern California on Thursday, giving officials a chance to study both the behavior of the storms and how officials responded to them.


The assessments are important because forecasters are predicting a winter of heavy, potentially destructive rain because of the El Niño weather pattern.

Oregon On Pace to Reverse Drought Designation

Cold weather and heavy snowfall this winter may mean the end of drought in 2016 — maybe.


According to the first water supply outlook report for the year — released by USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service — all basins in Oregon are experiencing above-normal snowpack levels, an estimated 125 percent of average.


That’s for the basins. The news gets even better. Snowfall levels already have surpassed the peak levels of last year’s snow season in all locations statewide. All locations.


Water managers are cautiously optimistic that the state will see drought recovery.