Lake Mead’s water levels this year fell to a near all-time low in the midst of a 16-year drought throughout the Southwestern U.S., prompting discussion at a national conference last week. The Colorado River Water Users Association met last week in Las Vegas for an annual conference, where guests — including Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey and Colorado Gov.
Archive for date: December 26th, 2016
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In the November 2016 general election, voters selected two new board members for Rainbow Municipal Water District. Hayden Hamilton was elected to serve the constituents of the district’s Division 2, which is in the western portion of the district. Michael Mack was elected to serve the constituents of the district’s Division 5, which serves the northern portion of the district in the Rainbow area.
First, KPBS exposed the big weakness of the San Diego transit system’s Compass Card system: You can’t put money on the cards for single rides, even though other systems understand that “stored value as a way to make riding transit as convenient as possible.” The glitch makes the cards costly for those who don’t ride very often because they have to put money on the card that they may never use.
Plans to demolish Matilija Dam moved another step forward last week. California Department of Fish and Wildlife announced that it will award $3.3 million to the project, one of 44 selected to get Proposition 1 funds this year. The initiative was passed by California voters in 2014 to provide money for water quality and supply projects and restoration work. Matilija Dam, completed in 1948, was designed to create a reservoir but filled with sediment and quickly became obsolete.
As 2016 wound down, California entered its sixth year of drought. But every part of the state wasn’t created equal. Northern California experienced significant drought relief during the year, while Southern California continued to be mired in historically arid conditions. The reason? A much-anticipated El Niño brought substantial storms during the spring to the north, giving Bay Area cities and communities across Northern California their best rainfall totals in five years. San Francisco rainfall was 98 percent of the historic average. San Jose was a healthy 100 percent, and Oakland 80 percent.
Foreign governments concerned about climate change may soon be spending more time dealing with Sacramento than Washington. President-elect Donald J. Trump has packed his cabinet with nominees who dispute the science of global warming. He has signaled he will withdraw the United States from the Paris climate agreement. He has belittled the notion of global warming and attacked policies intended to combat it.
After a week that brought rain and snow to San Diego County, an update from the KPBS Drought Tracker shows statewide rain totals growing at a steady pace, but the Sierra snowpack struggling to keep up. We’re now close to halfway through California’s wet season, defined as the six months between Oct. 1 and April 1. So far, statewide rainfall is running a bit ahead of schedule. As of Monday morning, the state has received 58 percent of what normally falls by the beginning of April.