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Urgency to Prepare Grows As El Niño Rolls Into Sacramento Region

Recent heavy rain has proved a soggy reminder: Having the right tools on hand can help you and your home stay dry.


After four years of epic drought, we may have forgotten what real rain looks like – and where water goes during a major storm. We may have made changes in our home landscapes that affect the way rainwater flows near our house. We may not know (yet) where the roof may leak or where weakened tree limbs may fall.

Could Fish Waste Be Key In California’s Drought Fight?

A San Diego-area nonprofit group believes fish waste may be the best cure for California’s drought.


The local organization ECOLIFE Conservation uses grant funding to create sustainable vegetable gardens that rely on fish waste to fertilize plants.


The process is called aquaponics, and the Environmental Club at Patrick Henry High School is the first in San Diego County to start its own aquaponics garden.

Calif. Water Board Issues Temporary Groundwater Storage Permits To Capture Water from Rainy Season

The California State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board) issued its first temporary groundwater storage permit to the Scott Valley Irrigation District to capture high winter and spring flows for local groundwater storage and recharge. The permit is the first in what is expected to be a series of temporary permits issued for this type of water diversion and use.


The temporary permit application was submitted Jan. 13 by the District in coordination with staff at the University of California at Davis, the California Farm Bureau Federation, Scott River Water Trust and others.

Storm Pattern Improving Water Outlook

After four years of drought, a return to more normal winter weather is improving the outlook for the coming year’s Nevada Irrigation District water supply.


General Manager Rem Scherzinger said seasonal precipitation had reached 104 percent of average as of Jan. 7 with an outlook for continued wet weather.


Precipitation at the district’s Bowman Reservoir was measured at 28.95 inches. Rainfall is measured each year July 1 through June 30. Bowman Reservoir is at 5,650 feet elevation in the Sierra.

9 Californians Who Play Key Roles in Water Policy

After four years of a crushing drought, Californians are hoping El Niño storms bring relief this winter.

But whether they replenish the state’s reservoirs and rebuild its crucial snowpack remains to be seen, with many experts cautioning that the state’s water deficit is too severe to be resolved in one rainy year.


So 2016 promises to be another critical year in California water policy centering on politically charged discussions of whether Gov. Jerry Brown (D) will extend urban conservation mandates and succeed in dramatically reshaping Northern California’s water infrastructure with the construction of two 30-mile-long tunnels under the Sacramento-San Joaquin Bay Delta.

Sierra Snowpack Reaches 115-Percent of Normal

Snow was still falling Tuesday night in the Sierra as storms moved across California, helping bring the state’s snowpack above normal for this time of year.


More than seven inches of snow fell in the higher elevations Tuesday.


The state’s water department says the snowpack in the central Sierra is at 115-percent of normal for this time of year.


State water managers say California’s snowpack needs to be at 150 percent of normal on April 1 to signal an end to drought.

It Hasn’t Been a Textbook El Niño Winter So Far — but That Could Change

The Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, California has long been a leader in studying the weather phenomenon known as El Niño. In a recent Scripps video a handful of scientists recount the story of El Niño forecasting by remembering that the strong El Niño of 1982-83was a complete surprise, catching unaware not just the scientists but also the state’s emergency services. Never again, they said, and when they saw a strong El Niño taking shape in 1997-98, they sounded the alarm early.

Bay Area Storm Leads To Flooding, Rock Slides and Crashes

A Tuesday-morning rainstorm flooded streets and small streams around the Bay Area as drivers took to the region’s roadways for the morning commute.


The National Weather Service issued a flood advisory and hazardous weather outlook from the North Bay south to Monterey, and east into the Central Valley.


The flood warning was in effect until 9:45 a.m., when Tuesday’s moderate-to-heavy rain will then turn to scattered showers before easing up in the afternoon.

El Niño Gearing Up For ‘Second Peak’ in Southern California

It’s a little too soon to write of this season’s El Niño as a no-show, just because a punishing succession of drenching storms has yet to materialize. The weather phenomenon is still on, even if the drizzles in Southern California and the harder rain up north that are happening now aren’t really El Niño-driven, according to experts. (With the exception of the intense rain in the first week of this month.) The LA Times reports that the relatively mild weather we’re seeing now here in the Southland is actually just part of normal weather for this time of year, but they insist that there are still serious storms .

What Happened To El Niño? Be Patient, L.A., It’ll Come, Expert Says

When the first hints of El Niño developed last year, experts believed that the brunt of the rain would occur in Southern California rather than Northern California.

So far this season, the opposite has happened.


Since Oct. 1, San Francisco was at 100% of average rainfall as of Monday; Eureka at 142% and Fresno, 152%. Yet Los Angeles was only at 64% of average.