Monday February 28, 2022

The Mercury News

Get ready for more brown lawns, high fire danger and water restrictions this summer.

California’s severe drought, which seemed to be retreating after soaking storms in October and December, is now all but certain to continue into a third year after the driest January and February in recorded history.

“We were so far above normal early in the winter,” said Jan Null, a meteorologist with Golden Gate Weather Services in Half Moon Bay. “But the rainfall season has just flat-lined. It has died.”

On Tuesday, officials from the State Department of Water Resources are scheduled to take a monthly snowpack reading in a media event at Phillips Station, near Sierra-at-Tahoe ski area. Statewide, they already know the news.

The Sierra Nevada snowpack — which provides nearly one-third of California’s water supply — on Monday was 64% of its historical average for that date, based on automatic sensors spread out over hundreds of miles. That’s nearly the same as last year on March 1, when it was 61%, and is nothing less than a massive collapse from the 168% of normal it was on New Year’s Day.

Read more

Link copied successfully