You are now in California and the U.S. Home Headline Media Coverage category.

Dry Start to California’s Water Year

A dry start to California’s water year is reflected in the season’s first snow survey of the Sierra Nevada snowpack. The statewide snowpack is 52% of average for Dec. 30. On average, the Sierra snowpack supplies about 30% of California’s water needs.

“The first snowpack survey of the water year points to California’s climate variability, which is why a diverse water portfolio is needed to provide a reliable supply,” said Goldy Herbon, San Diego County Water Authority senior water resources specialist. “The Water Authority and its 24 member agencies have successfully diversified water sources, and continue to expand those sources, to ensure our supply meets the needs of the region’s 3.3 million people and its $245 billion economy.”

Why It’s Way Too Early to Worry About Rain Deficits in SoCal

Yes, it’s been pretty dry so far this winter, but there is no need to worry. The major winter storm that roared through Southern California Monday proved we can erase a month’s worth of rain deficit in one day. I recently explained how the climate where we live — the Mediterranean Climate — sees the majority of its annual rainfall in the winter months. In fact, a whopping 80% of Southern California’s annual rain and snow falls from December through March.

Climate Change Spells Trouble for the Colorado River. But There’s Still Hope

One of the best road trips I’ve ever taken was a sightseeing tour of the Colorado River, where it straddles the California-Arizona state line. I stood at the edge of Imperial Dam near the Mexican border, which diverts water to the farm fields of the Imperial Valley, then drove north to Cibola National Wildlife Refuge, home to lots of birds. I walked along the river in Laughlin, Nev., where there’s a hotel called the Colorado Belle that looks like a boat, and in Needles, Calif., where Snoopy’s brother Spike lives.

Billion-Dollar Disasters: The Costs, in Lives and Dollars, Have Never Been So High

Extreme weather will surely have its own chapter in the turbulent history of 2020. The human and economic toll of Covid-19 was already enormous this fall, when it became clear that 2020 was on track to break the previous record for big weather disasters, fueled in part by climate change. From the derecho that battered the Midwest with hurricane-force winds to unprecedented wildfires that scorched more than 700,000 acres in Colorado and gave California its worst fire season in history, weather and climate events like these represented only a few line items in the latest tally of the nation’s billion-dollar disasters.

Farmers Swap Out Irrigation Methods To Keep The Colorado River From Growing Saltier

AJ Carrillo farms 18 acres outside of Hotchkiss, Colo., in the high desert of the Western Slope about an hour southeast of Grand Junction.  When he irrigates his peach orchard, water gushes from big white plastic pipes at the top of the plot and takes half a day to trickle down to the other end of his five-acre orchard. Carrillo is planning to convert his Deer Tree Farm from flood irrigation, which is commonly used in Western Colorado, to a new and much more efficient style of irrigation – microsprinklers.

Is Farming with Reclaimed Water the Solution to a Drier Future?

On a Saturday in late October, Carolyn Phinney stands hip-deep in a half acre of vegetables, at the nucleus of what will one day be 15 acres of productive farmland. “You can’t even see the pathways,” she says, surrounded by the literal fruits of her labors. The patch is a wealth of herbs, tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, kale, winter squash, and zucchini. So much zucchini — fruits the size of bowling pins hidden under leaves as big as umbrellas.