California and the West

Water news from California and the western United States.

San Diego County's Climate Future-Atmospheric Rivers-Water Supply

San Diego County’s Climate Future

Climate change and drought will impact San Diego County’s climate future, but regional water supply planning and adaptation measures will ensure a safe, reliable supply for the region. Water supply strategy was one of the key points participants learned about during a Monday panel discussion, “San Diego County’s Climate Future,” hosted online by the San […]

Phillips Station-Mountain Snowpack-Climate Change-DWR Snow Survey

New Study Identifies Mountain Snowpack Most “At-Risk” from Climate Change

As the planet warms, scientists expect that mountain snowpack should melt progressively earlier in the year. However, observations in the U.S. show that as temperatures have risen, snowpack melt is relatively unaffected in some regions while others can experience snowpack melt a month earlier in the year. This discrepancy in the timing of snowpack disappearance—the […]

Atmospheric Rivers-CW3E-Scripps-Rain

Landfalling Atmospheric Rivers Increase in First Quarter of Water Year 2021 Over 2020

A Scripps Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes report shows that more atmospheric rivers have made landfall over the U.S. West Coast in the first four months of Water Year 2021 compared to the previous period in 2020. The four months of Water Year 2021 experienced a total of 35 landfalling ARs over the […]

Precipitation-Snowpack Survey-Sierra Nevada-DWR

Precipitation Below Average in California

Precipitation is below average in California for the current water year. Despite recent storms that increased the statewide Sierra Nevada snowpack to 70% of average to date, the state is experiencing its second consecutive below average year for rain and snow. The water year starts on October 1 and ends September 30. The Department of […]

Colorado River Aqueduct-Conveyance-California Water Commission

Public Workshop on California Water Conveyance Projects

The California Water Commission is holding public workshops as part of its efforts to assess a potential state role in financing conveyance projects that could help meet needs in a changing climate. A workshop in Southern California is scheduled for December 10 on Zoom. The Commission’s goal with the workshops is to hear from diverse […]

Agriculture-Imperial Valley-Face Masks-coronavirus

Imperial County Agencies Deliver 500,000 Face Masks to Agriculture Workers

The Imperial County Agricultural Commissioner’s Office has taken the lead in distributing more than 500,000 face masks to all sectors of the agriculture industry in the Imperial Valley. “This was a positive result of the state understanding our need,” said Imperial County Agricultural Commissioner Carlos Ortiz. “They heard us.” Agriculture is one of the essential […]

San Diego Food Bank-Virtual Food Bank-Covid-19-primary photo

San Diego Regional Water Agencies Help Fight Hunger During Pandemic

An effort to bolster food bank supplies and fight hunger in San Diego County is getting a helping hand from the region’s public water agencies. The San Diego County Water Authority and its member agencies are supporting a virtual food drive in partnership with the Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank. The campaign allows donors to select and purchase items such as canned meats, […]

Southern California Edison Wants its New, Huge 770 MW Battery Storage Procurement Online Fast

Southern California Edison signed seven contracts for a total of 770 megawatts of lithium-ion battery-based energy storage — to enhance the regional grid’s reliability and replace four large coastal once-through cooling plants. It’s one of the nation’s largest energy storage procurements and an indication of utility acceptance of massive-scale battery storage. Late last year, the California Public […]

Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center-Sicco Rood-March-2020-WNN water supply

Water Supply Diversification Overcomes Dry Winter

No ‘March Miracle’ for snow and rain in California, but the San Diego County Water Authority has diversified water supply sources to weather the boom-and-bust cycle of California winters. March brought abundant precipitation throughout California, but not enough to offset a dry February. Most large urban water agencies in the state maintain a reliable water […]

Imperial Valley farming-Holtville-coronavirus-WNN-2020

Imperial Valley Farmers Step Up Harvesting During Coronavirus Pandemic

With the world struggling through the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic, vegetable growers in the Imperial Valley are continuing to harvest vegetables. Agriculture remains an essential service to serve California, the nation and the world. The vegetable harvest is ongoing as the Imperial Valley heads toward the final weeks of the winter vegetable crops. “We […]

Salton Sea Restoration Program is moving forward with a restoration project to benefit migratory birds.

Major Habitat Restoration Project Set to Move Forward at Salton Sea

The State of California, after resolving key hurdles, is set to move forward on a restoration project at the Salton Sea to improve habitat for migratory birds, while covering more exposed sea bed. When the State Water Resources Control Board last met to discuss the status of the Salton Sea Management Program (SSMP), Chairman E. […]

Mammoth Mountain received record snowfall in May 2019. Photo: Mammoth Mountain, Inc. California Reservoirs

California Reservoirs Near Capacity in May

It has been a winter – and spring – for the record books, for California reservoirs and ski resorts. And, it’s not over yet. Snow has continued to fall throughout May, with several inches or more in the Sierra Nevada and the southern California mountains. In the lowlands, the City of San Diego has experienced […]

Series Of Pacific Storms Raises Hopes For A Wet El Niño Season

Southern California was in the midst of its fourth rain event of the season this week and with another expected next week, some experts believe the arrival of the weather phenomenon known as El Niño could be imminent. While it may be too early to link the Pacific storms to El Niño, the federal Climate […]

Proposition 68 Brings Critical Funding for Salton Sea and Sends Message to the State

In a vote that was as important for its message as the funding it appropriates, California voters on June 5 supported Proposition 68, the $4.1 billion water bond that specifically included $200 million for Salton Sea restoration. That funding will support the ten-year phase one list of projects under the state’s Salton Sea restoration plan […]

Opposition is growing across California to the proposed state water tax. Photo: Pixabay/Creative Commons State water tax opposition

State Water Tax Opposition Grows Across California

San Diego, Calif. – Civic and business leaders statewide are increasingly expressing opposition to the proposed state drinking water tax. They call on the state’s leaders to find a better way to fund clean water than adding a tax, as proposed by state Senate Bill 623 and the Brown administration’s Budget Trailer Bill. A chief […]