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Here’s How Two Giant, Gravity-Powered Water Tunnels Could Protect California from Drought

California’s current drought crisis isn’t going away any time soon, and state authorities have cast their nets far and wide looking for any way of conserving what little water they have left. Now California Governor Jerry Brown has unveiled new details of a plan for two huge pipes, powered by gravity, to improve the flow of water around the Sunshine State.


The major infrastructure project is called the California Water Fix, and it turns the current system on its head.

‘Citizen Scientists’ Use Drones to Map El Nino Flooding

Forget about selfies. In California, residents are using smartphones and drones to document the coastline’s changing face.


Starting this month, The Nature Conservancy is asking tech junkies to capture the flooding and coastal erosion that come with El Nino, a weather pattern that’s bringing California its wettest winter in years — and all in the name of science.

Experts: El Nino Far From Over in the Southland

If you think El Nino is done, you should think again.


Meteorologist Kurt Kaplan from the National Weather Service says that “We can see storm tracks all the way through April.”


Kaplan added that the storms are certainly brewing, they’re just in Northern California at the moment.

Experts say it’s only a matter of time until El Nino comes down South, with February expected to be the wettest month of the year.

Has El Nino Stood Us Up? Forecasters Weigh In

Forecasters say El Niño hasn’t yet stood us up on a date and that the much-hyped set of storms — characterized by unusually warm temperatures in the equatorial Pacific that bring above-average rainfall — will hit Southern California hard soon, after teasing us with a few days of rain in early January.


“It’s not really gone away,” said Brett Albright, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in San Diego. “It’s still out there. It’s a temperature phenomenon, and it has a progressive effect on the atmosphere.”

As Snowpack Deepens, Drought Concern Lingers

Halfway through the winter, more water is stored in California’s snowpack than is usual for this time of year – signaling that maybe, just maybe, this could be the year the drought eases.


With a strong El Niño, it’s not really surprising that winter rain has arrived in California. What’s notable is the location.


Normally, El Niño drives storms to California’s Central Coast, with tailing fronts drenching Southern California. So far this winter, storms have for the most part hit farther north, dumping snow and some rain in the northern Sierra mountains that are the linchpin in California’s water system.

OPINION: More Water Storage Capacity is a Must

We are all hoping the current El Niño will bring an end to the drought. Whether or not we’ll continue to receive normal or above-normal precipitation is still a question, though an end to the drought may be unlikely this year. Whatever the outcome this year, future droughts are certain.

In 2014, California’s voters passed Proposition 1, a $7.12 billion water bond. While the bond contained $2.7 billion earmarked for water storage projects including dams and reservoirs, few if any such projects are currently under way.