What the Bonsall Unified School District does in the long term with the 49.78-acre parcel off of Gird Road the district owns wasn’t addressed at the Sept. 13 BUSD board meeting. Regardless of whether the district builds a school, builds athletic or other non-classroom facilities, or sells the land, the current use for part of the land will be by the Rainbow Municipal Water District for storage.
A much-anticipated water storage project in northern California received a major financial commitment from the federal government Monday.
According to the Bureau of Reclamation, the Biden Administration has committed $30 million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to the Sites Reservoir project.
After a third straight year of severe drought, the Bureau of Reclamation’s Central Valley Project begins the 2023 water year with 3.6 million acre-feet of water in storage — one of the lowest starting points in recent years. The CVP’s major reservoirs are (from north to south) Trinity, Shasta, Folsom, New Melones, Millerton, and the federal share of San Luis Reservoir. The water year begins Oct. 1 each year and ends Sept. 30.
After a third straight year of severe drought, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s Central Valley Project in California is beginning the 2023 water year with 3.6 million acre-feet of water in storage — one of the lowest starting points in recent years.
California should invest tens of billions of dollars in water recycling, storage and desalination over the next two decades to shore up its supply as the state gets drier and hotter, Gov. Gavin Newsom said in a proposal released Thursday.
It comes as drought continues to grip the U.S. West and the state prepares to lose 10% of its water supply by 2040, according to projections by the Department of Water Resources.
Conditions in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and its watershed are changing as droughts become warmer and more intense. But as our new study highlights, California is not doing a good job of tracking these changes. That’s making it even tougher to manage the water that is available for the benefit of the state’s communities, economy and environment.
At a point in the year when California’s water storage should be at its highest, the state’s two largest reservoirs have already dropped to critically low levels — a sobering outlook for the hotter and drier months ahead.
Shasta Lake, which rises more than 1,000 feet above sea level when filled to the brim, is at less than half of where it usually should be in early May — the driest it has been at this time of year since record-keeping first began in 1976. Lake Oroville, the largest reservoir in the State Water Project, a roughly 700-mile lifeline that pumps and ferries water all the way to Southern California, is currently at 55% of total capacity.
In January, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began testing a process to determine which reservoirs within its South Pacific Division are possible candidates for the use of forecast-informed reservoir operations. Relying on advancements in weather and hydrologic forecasting to improve reservoir management, FIRO offers a method for optimizing operations. Ultimately, the Corps intends to assess all its reservoirs nationwide to see whether they might make good candidates for FIRO.
Typically, reservoirs designed for purposes of flood control and water supply are operated in accordance with guide curves that are designed to ensure adequate storage capacity in advance of flood events and maximize storage for later uses.
What happened — or didn’t — weatherwise during the last two months starkly reminds us of the erratic nature of California’s vital water supply.
After months of severe drought, the state saw record-shattering storms in December, creating a hefty mountain snowpack while replenishing seriously depleted reservoirs. But January, historically a month of heavy precipitation, was bone-dry.
With climate change, California’s wet periods have become briefer, albeit sometimes more intense, and the dry periods have become longer, making the state’s elaborate water storage and conveyance systems less able to cope with precipitation patterns.
Hopes of a big drought busting year in California are starting to look grim after what felt like a great start to the rainy season.
January delivered little, if any, rain and snow and now February is off to an equally dry start. The winter whiplash continues to challenge water managers and with climate trends showing more of this boom or bust pattern, the state is rethinking its water supply system.
Now the state wants to head underground to explore what could be its biggest water storage potential.