“People in this mountain town [Lake of the Woods] straddling the San Andreas Fault are used to scrapping for water. The lake for which it is named went dry 40 years ago. But now, this tiny community is dealing with its most unsettling threat yet: It could run out of water by summer. …
“There are scenes all across California that illustrate the power of the drought.”
From The Fresno Bee, in a commentary by Bill Diedrich:
“California needs efficient, environmentally friendly conveyance of water from the north to the south, and more storage of water for the long term. We need additional storage adequate to maintain growth, agricultural production and the recovery of environmental systems. Let’s just say we need continual development of water.”
As February began, Marin was in the grips of a drought. December saw only 1.16 inches of rain and January was even worse: 0.01 of an inch, an all-time low dating back to 1879. … Flash forward to Monday.”
“Until the federal government fulfills water obligations in the north, don’t send it south.
“That was the message from Sacramento River settlement contractors, through an attorney, to the Bureau of Reclamation, which recently forecast the water deliveries to the districts and water companies along the river would be cut by 60 percent.”
“The California drought is stoking a congressional appetite for additional water storage, with new and larger dams back on competing menus.
“The latest offering is expected Friday, as House members plan to introduce a package of bills to authorize a larger Shasta Dam, a new dam on the Upper San Joaquin River and an expanded San Luis Reservoir.
“The reservoirs behind 14 major dams that line the front range of the San Gabriel Mountains — nearly empty after two years of drought — could rise significantly from the forecasted deluge over the next three days, public works officials said.
“The storm system could drop up to 6 inches of rain, which would dramatically reverse the current conditions, in which water levels are 70 feet below the maximum in some cases, officials said.”
“Ukiah Valley residents, businesses and farmers will be required to cut their dependence on Lake Mendocino water by half beginning next month.
“The Russian River Flood Control and Water Conservation Improvement District board of directors Monday night unanimously adopted the 50 percent mandatory cutbacks in an effort to maintain as much water as they can in drought-plagued Lake Mendocino.”
“The skinny rings of ancient giant sequoias and foxtail pines hold a lesson that Californians are learning once again this winter: It can get very dry, sometimes for a single parched year, sometimes for withering decades. …
“Some cities are rationing supplies and banning outdoor watering.
From The Modesto Bee, in a column by Jeff Jardine:
“Two of the Sierra’s most prominent rivers, the Stanislaus and Tuolumne, run right through Tuolumne County. …
“And the county’s water agency, the Tuolumne Utilities District, owns rights to none of it. The city and county of San Francisco own senior rights on the Tuolumne River, with the Turlock and Modesto irrigation districts controlling Don Pedro Reservoir.”
From the California Department of Water Resources (DWR):
“Check out updated Water Conditions in Bulletin 120. This is a publication issued four times a year, in the second week of February, March, April, and May by the California Department of Water Resources.
“In one of his earliest boyhood memories, Dion Neutra walked out the front door of his family’s Silver Lake home and down to the water’s edge. …
“But over the next eight decades, the architect — who trained under his father, Richard Neutra, a master of Modernism who lived and worked out of Silver Lake — watched as the water he loved began to change. It was drained several times and its shoreline pushed back.
“Phillips [Lynn Phillips, general manager of the Sutter Extension Water District], like most water managers and farmers, is unsure about his water supply for 2014. Phillips is anticipating a 50 percent cut — the maximum possible — in the district’s water delivery from Lake Oroville, which irrigates about 20,000 acres.”