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Almond Farms Keep Growing, And Keep Moving On Water Conservation

Much was written during California’s recent five-year drought about the amount of water used by almonds. The nuts have become California’s most lucrative agricultural commodity, and a major export product. Long before concerns about water use by almond growers emerged, the industry initiated measures to conserve water by embracing microirrigation systems. It has also become a leader in efforts such as recharging groundwater by flooding almond orchards during winter storms.

Why This Winter’s El Niño Will Not Bring More Rain To California

An El Niño is forecast for the winter ahead, and we all know what that means. Or do we? El Niño—that cyclical warming of the equatorial Pacific Ocean—has long been associated with wet winters across much of the West. Which is always welcome news across the chronically water-short region. But in reality, whether El Niño actually delivers greater-than-normal precipitation is strictly a toss-up, says Jan Null, owner of Golden Gate Weather Services, a consultancy based in Saratoga, California.

Officials Still Urging Residents To Stay Away From The Salton Sea

Imperial County officials are still warning residents to not go near the Salton Sea after dangerous bacteria was found there. The Imperial County Public Health Department announced last week that cyanobacteria were detected in a water test that was conducted earlier this month. Public health officials said residents are not in danger as long as they don’t drink the water. “So there’s not any evidence that anyone has been harmed. The levels that had been detected, although they alert us to pay attention, they are not levels that are expected to be harmful,” said Dr. Stephen Munday, Imperial County Public Health Officer.