The federal government continues to mishandle contracts with private companies during disasters such as California’s wildfires, according to a report published Thursday by the Government Accountability Office. The advance contracts are meant to ensure needed goods and services are in place when disasters strike, such as construction supplies and services, tarps, food, water, blankets, generators, cleaning and hygiene supplies, housing and lodging assistance and communication support.
The Department of Water Resources (DWR) presented Dr. Bin Guan with the 2018 Climate Science Service Award for his tool that identifies atmospheric rivers in weather models. The work supports experimental forecasts of these large storms earlier than current models. … DWR staff presented the 2018 award to Dr. Guan on December 5 at a DWR/Water Education Foundation workshop in Irvine. The topic of the workshop was improving sub-seasonal to seasonal precipitation forecasting.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) expects California will receive less than the $9 billion she requested from congressional leaders to help with recovery from the deadliest and most destructive wildfire her state has ever experienced. “Well, we won’t get $9 billion,“ Feinstein told POLITICO today, adding that she doesn’t have an update on negotiations over a disaster aid package.
The storm that pelted Southern California on Thursday flooded roadways, triggered mud and debris flows in the burn areas of Malibu and dumped several inches of snow on mountain passes, shutting down the 5 Freeway through the Grapevine for much of the day. … Since the start of the water year on Oct. 1, downtown Los Angeles has received more than 4 inches of rain — more than the average amount of precipitation for this time of year and significantly more than last year, when about 1/10 of an inch of rain fell.
Workers hauled big rocks in to Capistrano Beach on Wednesday, placing them along a stretch that collapsed last Friday — the latest damage in an area prone to weather destruction through the years. Heavy machinery was being used to place the rocks along the shoreline, where last week waves and high tide battered the stretch of coast, causing a wooden walkway, sea wall, palm trees and light fixtures to collapse toward the ocean.
California’s Sierra Nevada, the state’s increasingly crucial reservoir, is off to a well-above-normal snowpack to begin the wet season. Many of the peaks are seeing double the normal amount of snowpack compared to early-December averages.
A rare fire tornado that raged during this summer’s deadly Carr Fire in Northern California was created by a combination of scorching weather, erratic winds and an ice-topped cloud that towered miles into the atmosphere, according to a study announced Wednesday.
State Sen. Benjamin Allen (D-Santa Monica) introduced the Wildfire, Drought and Flood Protection Bond Act of 2020 as another tool the state can use to offset a pattern of increasingly destructive and deadly blazes.
A major storm will spread a widespread mess of snow, sleet and freezing rain from the southern Plains to the Ozarks and the southern Appalachians late this week into early next week. The storm system is currently pushing into California and will produce lower-elevation rain and mountain snow there through Thursday.
Even before the tornado formed, California’s fire season had been unrelenting. The ruinous Wine Country wildfires the previous year began to seem less a singular catastrophe than a foreshadowing. … “As much as I hate to say it, this is what the future of wildfires looks like,” said Daniel Swain, a climate scientist at UCLA. “Except the acceleration hasn’t ended yet.”
You’re seeing the pictures of deep snow being surfed by skiers and snowboarders across the state. The Colorado Department of Transportation is working double time to keep high country stretches of highways passable. But if you were expecting an overnight solution to Colorado’s drought, which has been particularly acute in the southwest part of the state, don’t hold your breath.
More heat and drought. Less water. More heat-related deaths and hospital visits. Bigger wildfires. Fewer native trees. Maybe more valley fever cases. Someday, possibly less food and less energy, not counting solar energy. These and other impacts of warmer weather in Arizona and the Southwest are laid out in a chapter of the new federally financed National Climate Assessment devoted to this region.
Evelyn Valdez-Ward is a doctoral student in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of California, Irvine where her research focuses on the effects of climate change and drought on plants and soils.
Your research is on water transport in plants and how that might be shifting with climate change. Can you tell us a little more about what you are studying?
Bay Area residents should brace for cold sheets of rain this week as unusually low temperatures accompany two storms expected to blanket the region through Saturday, forecasters said. The system, currently over the ocean northwest of the Bay Area, could get stronger as it moves south and drops up to 6 inches of snow over Lake Tahoe, according to the National Weather Service.
The photograph below shows the Yosemite Valley in 1899 on the left, with open meadows and a patchwork of large conifers. On the right is the same view in 2011. The valley floor has many more trees. Which forest do you think is healthier?
Dam operators are planning to store nearly 4 billion extra gallons of water this winter in Lake Mendocino, the reservoir near Ukiah that plays a critical role in providing water for residents, ranchers and fish along the upper Russian River and to communities in Sonoma and Marin counties.
Cold storms are delivering and putting the Tahoe Basin slightly ahead of the precipitation pace of last year. However, with more storms in the forecast, the snowpack in Lake Tahoe could jump about three to four months ahead of where it was a season ago.
In a mild climate like that of California, virtually everything grows. Rainfall is suited to any species – even those from furthest part of the globe that adapt to a long, dry season. Plants adapted to extremes of vast continents of Asia and Africa are mind boggling in number. It is hard to say how many foreign species will naturalize here if given a chance. It’s even harder to say how many already have.
Rain, big waves and high tides wreaked havoc on the small stretch of beach in Dana Point, an area that has already taken a beating in recent years from storm surges, and environmental watchers say, an example of rising sea levels.