Dense fog, rain and wind are expected in San Diego County starting Tuesday night as the second of three bouts of inclement weather this week hits the region. Only a slight chance of showers in the forecast for the beaches, valleys and mountains during the day, but rain will become more likely overnight into Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service. Rain may start falling in the deserts Wednesday.
Archive for date: January 10th, 2017
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The State Water Resources Control Board recently held a public hearing to receive input on its Bay-Delta Water Quality Control Plan. The proposal would force the Modesto and Turlock irrigation districts to dedicate 40 percent of unimpaired flows along the Tuolumne River to benefit fish and wildlife. David White is the CEO of Opportunity Stanislaus, a company that is all about improving the economic vitality of Stanislaus County. He noted how the proposal will negatively impact the local economy.
Over the weekend and into Monday morning, a powerful storm in Nevada and Northern California resulted in mudslides and flooding, caused more than a thousand people to evacuate their homes, took out power lines and brought down a famous sequoia “tunnel tree.” That storm is over, but residents can’t relax yet: Starting on Tuesday, a second potent winter storm is expected to hit the region.
Recent rain and snowfall conditions have us all hoping 2017 may be a wet year and offer a break in our six-year drought. But whether the drought is broken or not, Californians must act this year to achieve more sustainable long-term water management. California operates at a water deficit. Even in wet years, we use more surface and groundwater than is replenished by rainfall. It is not sustainable.
A lull in a series of powerful winter storms gave Northern California a chance Monday to clean up from widespread flooding while also assessing how all that moisture is altering the state’s once-grim drought picture. A few big storms alone won’t end the six-year drought, but there were growing signs that the so-called atmospheric river was making a major dent. Officials released water from the Folsom Lake reservoir and several others as a flood control measure.
Well, we asked for it — sort of. We’ve gone from drought to deluge. It seems we are being tossed around in an atmospheric river in what is considered one of the worst West Coast flooding events in a decade. Yes, we needed the snow pack, full reservoirs, water for rivers, crops and forests. But I guess we need to be more specific — we didn’t want a fire hose trained on our state. We did not want flood alerts, evacuations, landslides and road closures, along with all sorts of advisories. We definitely did not want loss of life.
Over the past couple of days, drought-stricken Los Angeles received about an inch of rain. But because so much of the Los Angeles area is paved, more than 3.8 billion gallons of that fresh rainwater was flushed into the L.A. River and out to the Pacific Ocean, carrying pollution and toxins along the way. As Southern California faces a sixth year of severe drought, we can’t afford to waste this precious resource. The new climate reality demands that Los Angeles get water-smart — and fast.
Big rains in California have dumped more than a million acre-feet of water into the state’s reservoirs since Jan. 1 but this week stalled the Central Valley’s navel and mandarin orange harvests, state and industry officials say. The storms had added 1.1 million acre-feet of water to California’s reservoirs by Jan. 9 with more to come, according to state officials, while prompting the opening of the Sacramento Weir — a flood-control bypass around the city — for the first time since 2006.
The back-to-back storms that pummeled California since last weekend are part of an atmospheric river event that has brought major flooding and damage to parts of Northern California. On Tuesday morning, the National Weather Service issued a flash-flood watch for San Francisco. Up in the North Bay, the Russian River is still at flood stage in Guerneville while the Napa River near St. Helena will most likely flood again.
While some farmers lament the release of thousands of acre-feet of water from Friant Dam, others are putting it to good use: recharging groundwater supplies. Last week, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation began releasing water from Millerton Lake to make room for a deluge of storm runoff. The move frustrated some farmers, who say spilling water into the river and eventually the ocean is a prime example of why the state needs to build a dam at Temperance Flat. Farming advocates are pushing for state and federal funding to build the $2.8 billion project.