Topic: Water Supply


Water Supply

California’s climate, characterized by warm, dry summers and mild winters, makes the state’s water supply unpredictable. For instance, runoff and precipitation in California can be quite variable. The northwestern part of the state can receive more than 140 inches per year while the inland deserts bordering Mexico can receive less than 4 inches.

By the Numbers:

  • Precipitation averages about 193 million acre-feet per year.
  • In a normal precipitation year, about half of the state’s available surface water – 35 million acre-feet – is collected in local, state and federal reservoirs.
  • California is home to more than 1,300 reservoirs.
  • About two-thirds of annual runoff evaporates, percolates into the ground or is absorbed by plants, leaving about 71 million acre-feet in average annual runoff.
Aquafornia news Bureau of Reclamation

News Release: Reclamation provides updated Central Valley Project water supply information

The Bureau of Reclamation reports that, due to continued dry conditions, the initial 2015 water supply allocation released on February 27 for Central Valley Project agricultural contractors and municipal and industrial contractors remains unchanged.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Historically small Sierra snowpack, seen up close, another bad sign in California drought (with video)

The water frozen in snow throughout the Sierra Nevada is 8% of average — less than a third the size of the smallest on record. On Wednesday when this disappointing wet season ends, the headlines will be the next alarm bell in the state’s damaging, four-year drought.

Aquafornia news Redding Record Searchlight

Rain drops don’t dampen drought outlook for North State

Already cities and water districts in the North State and beyond have been working to broker water transfers, remind folks about restrictions and take other steps in the hopes of meeting demand during the peak summer months.

Aquafornia news UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences California WaterBlog

Blog: Water giveaways during a drought invite conflict

When drought makes water scarcer in California, those with senior water rights are offered more money to move their water to other users. But fish are asked to give up their water for free. … For California, even partial markets for environmental water would satisfy the state’s stated “co-equal” environmental and economic goals for water management.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Deal would spare Lake Tulloch this summer

Water districts announced a deal Monday that would prevent scenic Lake Tulloch from being drained — at least until after the end of the summer boating season.

Aquafornia news KQED Public Radio for Northern California

Blog: A candid conversation with California’s ‘water czar’ (with audio)

When water supplies are tight, as they are now, her [Felicia Marcus's] [State Water Resources Control] board is where the buck stops in arguments over who gets what.

Aquafornia news Circle of Blue

Blog: World Water Day ingredients need big dash of urgency

From east to west, ever since the world began, there was water. Plentiful. Clean. Always available. None of those descriptions apply to water today. … The world right now is drowning in water risks: floods, droughts, contamination, disease, dead seas, and shortages. 

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Conservationists say thinning Sierra forests may help state water supply

With the state entering its fourth year of drought, some conservationists are looking at thinning Sierra forests to increase the amount of water that flows into area rivers. … On Friday, the Association of California Water Agencies also released its own report that calls for better headwater and forest management – and for better collaboration among federal, state and other agencies, and other stakeholders.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: No, California won’t run out of water in a year

Lawmakers are proposing emergency legislation, state officials are clamping down on watering lawns and, as California enters a fourth year of drought, some are worried that the state could run out of water.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

UN warns world could have 40% water shortfall by 2030

The [U.N.] report, released in New Delhi two days before World Water Day, calls on policymakers and communities to rethink water policies, urging more conservation as well as recycling of wastewater as is done in Singapore.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Sierra snowpack smallest on record, state water officials tell Fresno meeting

State water leaders Thursday told water district leaders, farmers, bankers and many others at California State University, Fresno, to expect possibly a record-breaking small snowpack. … The briefing, sponsored by the state Department of Water Resources and the Water Education Foundation, is an attempt to explain the dire situation after four years of drought.

Aquafornia news The Modesto Bee

New study, old data in Stanislaus County effort to manage groundwater

A long-awaited tool created to help manage groundwater was unveiled Wednesday to the Stanislaus County Water Advisory Committee, whose members listened politely but seemed less than thrilled.

Aquafornia news The Modesto Bee

Editorial: Preserve our resources without destroying our region

News flash: The state doesn’t want to ruin the Valley’s economy. News flash: Farmers don’t want to see our rivers die or salmon vanish. Why is it necessary to make such obvious statements?

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Blog: California Water Anxiety Syndrome — Feel it yet?

California, as you might have heard, is running out of water. Very, very quickly. … Perhaps you read NASA senior water scientist Jay Famiglietti’s rather terrifying op-ed in the LA Times, declaring that, by all available measures, our state has only one year of water storage left?

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

State backs Salinas Valley well monitoring

State regulators on Monday approved a critical well-monitoring program that should give the public a better idea of the groundwater situation in the Salinas Valley. 

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Well problems force Sierra residents to take conservation seriously

Residents in this small community [Shaver Springs] bordering the Sierra National Forest, six miles west of Shaver Lake, could probably teach people living in water-short communities a few lessons.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Commentary: All must be part of drought solution

Like the vast majority of Californians, we at Nestlé Waters are deeply concerned about the state’s drought and how it’s affecting families, farmers, consumers and businesses.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Sacramento Valley landowners are buying into Sites Reservoir plans

So far, landowners in the Sacramento Valley have made commitments for 85,000 acre-feet of water if Sites Reservoir is built. … A few weeks ago Reps. John Garamendi, D-Walnut Grove, and Doug LaMalfa, R-Richvale, introduced a bill to speed up the Sites Reservoir feasibility study. In the meantime, the Sites JPA is looking to hire a general manager … 

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

3,200 people risk running out of water in drought

The Lake Don Pedro community is operating in emergency mode.  For the last several weeks, work crews have drilled well after well, hoping to find groundwater. … Lake McClure depends entirely on rain and snow runoff from the Merced River watershed.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Commentary: California has about one year of water left. Will you ration now?

Given the historic low temperatures and snowfalls that pummeled the eastern U.S. this winter, it might be easy to overlook how devastating California’s winter was as well.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Annual Northern California Water Association meeting includes much support for Sites Reservoir

“Hope is not a strategy” when it comes to water supply, said Bryce Lundberg, chairman of the Northern California Water Association (NCWA). … At the top of his list is Sites Reservoir.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Warm February takes toll on mountain snowpack in West

Warm temperatures and a lack of snowfall in February have taken a toll on winter snowpack in the Cascade Mountains and other areas in the West, the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service said Wednesday.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Reservoirs for East Bay water users near 38-year lows

Levels at Sierra reservoirs that supply water for 1.3 million East Bay customers are as low as they’ve been in nearly 40 years, and it could take a miracle to make them better before the onset of the long dry season, officials were told Tuesday.

Aquafornia news Redding Record Searchlight

Supervisors weigh water purchase to meet needs during drought year

The Shasta County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday will consider purchasing 250 acre-feet of water, about 81 million gallons, from the McConnell Foundation to feed the needs of four county-run water districts after projections in February showed unprecedented water allocation cutbacks from the Central Valley Project.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Blog: Well went dry last Easter, but one Kingsburg man gets blessed with new water supply

[Abelardo De Leon] Garcia, 81, had lost his water well on Easter Sunday last year. Nearly a year later, his water supply has been resurrected, thanks to federal funding and a Visalia-based nonprofit called Self-Help Enterprises.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Commentary: Tap California’s innovators to develop water policies

After 40 years of working on California water issues, it sometimes feels to me [George Miller] as if we haven’t learned anything. … The policies of the past century won’t work in a future where we will face continued population growth and the effects of climate change.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Editorial: Water storage projects need critical analysis

The California Water Commission was born in a long-ago era, in a hopeful attempt to filter some of the politics out of the state’s most important natural resource. 

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Some get water, many won’t — what’s wrong with this?

How does the south San Joaquin Valley get some water in back-to-back drought years while the east side goes without? And, by the way, vast tracts of farmland on the Valley’s west side also will be shut out.

Aquafornia news Tahoe Daily Tribune

Drought almost certain to continue, snow surveys suggest

Had it not been for a couple of days of snowfall during the weekend, the ground would have been bare, Frank Gehrke of the Department of Water Resources said Tuesday during a snow survey at Philips Station near Sierra-At-Tahoe Road.

Aquafornia news Santa Cruz Sentinel

California business coalition pushes for secure water supply

A diverse coalition of global businesses operating in California launched a campaign Thursday to seek and support solutions to the state’s water supply crunch.

Aquafornia news Appeal-Democrat

Hold that water: Yuba City demand may exceed supply

Yuba City’s water supply outlook in 2015 is grim, and there is a possibility that water demand may exceed supply.

Aquafornia news National Geographic

Lack of snow leaves California’s ‘water tower’ running low

Snowpack—which essentially serves as a water tower for the western United States—produces vital meltwater that flows off the mountains each spring. … But the snowpack is becoming more like a snow gap, as temperatures in the Cascades and Sierra Nevada become too warm for the snow that replenishes the ecosystem each winter.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Editorial: State proves the value Sites Reservoir could have

There was a paradox in the flood of recent drought news.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Editorial: Water supply — Modified Cease and Desist Order is best option

The Monterey Peninsula has struggled for decades to find solutions to its water supply problems. After a few misfires over the years, progress is now being made.

Aquafornia news The Modesto Bee

Fish vs. people frustration rages at Oakdale Irrigation District meeting

State and federal officials favoring fish habitat are to blame for the Oakdale Irrigation District’s tentative plan to drain Tulloch Lake this summer, OID leaders told dozens of anxious lake-area residents.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

California snow levels reach historic lows

Snow levels in the Sierra Nevada are at or below what they were during the driest years in California’s recorded history, surveyors said Tuesday, dashing hopes that last weekend’s storm would begin to pull the state out of its increasingly frightful drought.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: State to deliver more water, but not from Lake Oroville

Customers of the State Water Project will be getting more water this year, the Department of Water Resources announced Monday, but none of the extra water will come from Lake Oroville.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

California to carry out 3rd snowpack survey

The California Department of Water Resources on Tuesday will carry out the winter’s third survey of the Sierra Nevada’s snowpack, which shows no signs of recovery.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

More water deliveries through State Water Project (with audio)

The announcement increases the water allocation from 15 to 20 percent and is enough to meet the needs of about 400-thousand households for a year.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Water shortages a near certainty for this summer as feds announce low deliveries

In a clear indicator that California is descending into a fourth year of drought, the federal government on Friday announced that the Central Valley Project — California’s largest water delivery system — will provide no water again this year to most Central Valley farmers and only 25 percent of the contracted amount to urban areas such as Santa Clara, Alameda and Contra Costa counties.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Feds reduce water allocation for California (with audio)

The US Bureau of Reclamation says most farmers south of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta will face a second year with no water from the Central Valley Project.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Some California farmers to go without federal water

The federal government said Friday it won’t send any of its reservoir water to the Central Valley for the second straight year, forcing farmers in California’s agricultural heartland to again scramble for other sources or leave fields unplanted.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Water withheld again

In a sign that the drought actually has worsened, federal officials on Friday announced an unprecedented second consecutive year with no water deliveries to many farms up and down the Central Valley.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Most Central Valley farmers unlikely to get federal water, again

In another blow to California’s parched heartland, federal officials said Friday that for the second year in a row most Central Valley farmers are unlikely to receive water from the region’s major irrigation project this summer.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Feds say many Central Valley farmers will get no water deliveries

Hundreds of farmers in the Central Valley were told Friday they can expect zero water deliveries this year from the federal government, the latest fallout from what is likely to be a fourth straight drought year in California. … The announcement does not affect all farms.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Blog: More Tulloch talk

Some tidbits that didn’t make the cut in today’s [Feb. 25] story about the possible draining of Lake Tulloch, east of Stockton:

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

California has entered fourth year of drought, water experts say

Rainfall, snowpack and runoff estimates are way below average, indicating the state will continue in drought-emergency mode throughout the year, state and regional water experts told a gathering of 120 water managers Wednesday at a forum sponsored by the Southern California Water Committee and the National Water Research Institute.

Western Water Magazine

Is California’s Water Supply Resilient and Sustainable?
January/February 2015

This issue looks at sustainability and resiliency and what the terms mean for California’s water.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Commentary: Fresno water plan is a boondoggle

The City of Fresno says if it builds the proposed southeast water-treatment plant, the water will come. 

Aquafornia news Water Education Foundation

Announcement: New Western Water Magazine available — ‘Is California’s Water Supply Resilient and Sustainable?’

In the January/February issue of Western Water Magazine, Writer Gary Pitzer delves into the notion of a “sustainable” and “resilient” water supply. His article highlights what sustainability and resiliency mean to a state in the middle of a drought and with a growing population and water needs that stretch from bustling cities in the north and south to the rich agricultural fields of the Central, Imperial and Coachella valleys and Central Coast. … Read the excerpts from this issue. Purchase a printed magazine or subscribe to the digital, interactive version.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

It may seem like a healthy dose of rainfall for Los Angeles, but it’s not

… in fact, the city’s rain totals since Oct. 1 — the beginning of a rain year that ends Sept. 30 — show that L.A. is still on pace for a below-average year.

Aquafornia news Bay Area News Group

EBMUD eyes fines for water thieves

With tap water becoming an increasingly hot commodity in the drought, East Bay officials say it’s time to turn up the pressure on meter cheaters and others who steal water.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Editorial: Fighting over trickles on tragically beautiful winter days

In what passes for winter, the sun burned away the February fog and the thermometer reached 70 in Sacramento.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

California’s snowless winter worsening; Oregon also in trouble

California’s unusually high temperatures and shortage of precipitation — especially snow — will probably continue into the spring, federal scientists said Thursday.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Water fight intensifies as south San Joaquin Valley farmers, Delta interests prepare to face off

In a drought, every drop of water is contested — a fact that will be abundantly clear at a meeting today in Sacramento.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Scientists go high and low for data on drought-fighting ’sky rivers’

The P-3 Orion aircraft was part of an unprecedented research effort that sampled and measured two atmospheric river storms that gave half the state a welcome soaking a week ago.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Draft proposal to delay Carmel River cutback released

After resisting disclosure, Monterey Peninsula Regional Water Authority president Jason Burnett released a draft proposal late Tuesday aimed at delaying a state-ordered cutback in pumping from the Carmel River by four years.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Commentary: Old water conflicts open again

Exactly six months ago, the Capitol’s politicians were hailing a new era of bipartisan comity and cooperation with the overwhelming passage of $7.5 billion in bonds to improve the state’s water supply.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Dan Walters Daily: How will California spend water bond? (video)

Video: Dan Walters Daily: How will California spend water bond?

Aquafornia news Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA)

PPIC addresses state water challenges in new multi-topic policy paper series

California will need to address several key water policy areas to secure a safe and reliable water supply, improve the ecosystem and reduce flood risks, according to a new comprehensive multi-topic policy paper released Tuesday by the Public Policy Institute of California.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Blog: California’s complex water management shapes spending

The Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee will examine Gov. Jerry Brown’s approach to water funding and local funding needs during a 10 a.m. hearing in Room 4203 of the Capitol.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

California reservoirs benefit from recent storms (with audio)

National Weather Service forecasters in Sacramento have updated reservoir totals after the recent storms.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Water cutbacks loom but San Diego County agency says it’s prepared

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is considering possible water cutbacks of 10% or more to local agencies as the region’s drought shows no signs of lifting despite recent rains.

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Mandatory water rationing could start July 1, water officials say

The Metropolitan Water District, the agency that supplies the bulk of the water for Southern California, is considering water rationing by summer unless statewide drought conditions radically improve, the agency announced Monday.

Aquafornia news U-T San Diego

Southern Californians may be facing water cutbacks this summer

Southern Californians may face water cutbacks this summer, the Metropolitan Water District warned Monday after outlining options for rationing amid the state’s fourth straight year of drought.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Storm not nearly enough to bust California drought

For water managers, a central problem is the lack of snow in the Sierra.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Northern California getting much more rain than Southern

As the state faces a possible fourth year of drought, Northern California is enjoying a healthy wet winter so far, with rainfall levels at 100 percent of their historic average or above in nearly every city, and reservoirs, while still not back to normal, steadily filling.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Recent storms did little to boost California snowpack

Here’s the bad news: Despite days of precipitation, California’s snowpack was barely boosted after a weekend of storms that brought power outages, downed trees, thunderstorms and a threat of tornadoes.

Aquafornia news Bay Area News Group

Rain in Bay Area, snow in Sierra, but reservoirs still low

The weekend storm brought more than an inch of rain around the Bay Area by Saturday evening and up to 2 feet of wet snow at higher Sierra Nevada elevations near Lake Tahoe, but Northern California’s largest drinking water reservoirs were still well below average levels.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Farmersville lets drought-stricken neighbors hook up to city water

Farmersville is coming to the rescue of its drought-stricken neighbor by allowing residents of Cameron Creek Colony rural subdivision to hook up to the city’s water system.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Jerry Brown, Interior secretary announce new drought funding

Gov. Jerry Brown and U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell announced Friday a $29-million plan to help California’s parched Central Valley cope with the ongoing drought. 

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Northern California storm not expected to help Sierra snowpack

As California awaits a Pacific storm to bring rain, the latest U.S. Drought Monitor report shows a slight easing of drought in the southern part of the state last week.

Aquafornia news Capitol Weekly

Parched state looks for rain — anywhere

When the State Water Resources Control Board met Tuesday morning, the sky west of Sacramento suggested rain was coming.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

NorCal storm delayed, but still on target

The main blast from a large storm descending on California now appears likely to strike during Friday’s evening commute hours.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Scientists ride the Pineapple Express

A team of scientists on Thursday flew four aircraft into the torrent of an atmospheric river storm headed toward California.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

River of rain heading toward Northern California

A major storm is expected to blow into Northern California starting Thursday night and lasting into Monday. … Here’s a closer look.

Aquafornia news Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA)

Federal, state and local water officials discuss drought, priorities for 2015, and benefits of potential storage projects

The California Board of Food and Agriculture on Tuesday heard updates from federal, state and local water officials on the drought and anticipated actions for the coming year.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Snow survey is more complex than photo opportunity

Today, snow sensors scattered through the Sierra, satellite imagery and aerial flybys augment the 106-year-old “manual survey.” The technology helps to provide a clearer update of California’s water conditions that water agencies depend on to perform the increasingly crucial job of managing our diminishing water supply for the rest of the year.

Aquafornia news The Modesto Bee

Turlock council to examine water issues

City leaders on Tuesday night will examine water issues, including the wells that provide the supply now and the prospects for river and recycled sources.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Russian River basin prepares for fourth year of drought

The dry January was the topic of discussion Monday at a meeting held by the Sonoma County Water Agency, which provides drinking water to more than 600,000 residents in Sonoma and Marin counties — relying exclusively on rainfall captured in two reservoirs.

Aquafornia news Bureau of Reclamation

News Release: Reclamation seeks applicants for 2015 WaterSMART Basin Studies

The Bureau of Reclamation is seeking applications for the Basin Studies Program in 2015. Interested non-federal entities wishing to participate in the selection process should submit a short letter of interest to their respective Reclamation regional office by Feb. 24, 2015. Through basin studies, Reclamation works with state and local partners to conduct comprehensive water supply and demand studies of river basins in the western United States.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Amid California’s drought, water chief preaches conservation – and balance

Felicia Marcus gets in the shower when it’s still cold. As full-time chair of California’s State Water Resources Control Board, Marcus has a key role in how California stewards its finite resources during a devastating drought.

Aquafornia news KQED Public Radio for Northern Calif.

Blog: Shrinking Sierra snowpack heightens drought worries (with DWR video)

Manual surveys on Thursday confirmed concerns over the withering mountain snowpack — a critical source of water for millions of Californians.

Aquafornia news San Bernardino County Sun

California snowpack gains erased by meager January rainfall

Traditionally California’s wettest month, January’s meager rainfall has produced a miniscule improvement in the crucial winter snowpack in the Sierra Nevada that historically provides about 30 percent of the state’s water needs.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Snowpack in California ‘dismally meager’ (with audio)

While December storms brought some hope that California’s drought would ease, January’s second snow survey shattered it.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Scientists see shrinking California snowpack as a harbinger

The state Department of Water Resources and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, the two agencies that operate most of California’s large dams, are in the early stages of studying possible rules changes to accommodate shifts in hydrology expected with a warming climate.

Aquafornia news Bay Area News Group

Driest January in history: Bay Area swings from boom to bust after wettest December

For the first time ever, San Francisco, Oakland and Sacramento have recorded no rainfall for the month of January — nada drop. … Southern California has had better luck, enjoying a couple of significant weather systems this month that came up from the south. 

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Snow levels in the Sierra drop to among the lowest on record

Chicken Littles they are not, but California water officials are fretting a bunch over the weather.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: Sierra snowpack dismal for January; fourth year of drought looks likely

The latest survey of California’s mountain snowpack on Thursday brought the bad news slamming home: This month will rank as the driest January in state history at many locations, virtually assuring a fourth straight year of drought. On Thursday, the statewide snowpack was 25 percent of normal for the date.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

NASA moisture satellite launch scrubbed due to winds

NASA has scrubbed the launch of an Earth-observing satellite because of wind conditions over California.

Aquafornia news Santa Cruz Sentinel

Santa Cruz water demand flat even after healthy rainfall

After receiving nearly 160 percent of normal rainfall in November and December — thus causing Santa Cruz to suspend mandatory water rationing for residential customers — the driest January on record stands as a stark reminder of how vulnerable the water supply is to nature’s mood swings.

Aquafornia news KPCC Southern California Public Radio

Water cutbacks on horizon if snow stays stingy (with audio)

On the eve of the January snowpack survey of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, water management officials said Southern California’s largest water wholesaler may need to institute stricter water limits if winter precipitation does not improve.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Commentary: Delta plan — New coalition supports the governor’s twin tunnels

As part of the newly formed Californians for Water Security, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group has joined a coalition of farmers, businesses and labor, environmental and water leaders to support the Bay Delta Conservation Plan, Gov. Jerry Brown’s bold strategy to fix the state’s deteriorating water distribution system.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Measuring Sierra snowpack is a lot more complex than it looks

As California caps what may be its driest January on record, Frank Gehrke will lead a bevy of surveyors on Thursday to a predetermined spot on Echo Summit in an exercise that has become a monthly downer in the documentation of the state’s historic drought.

Aquafornia news Sierra Sun

California Department of Water Resources announces winter’s second snow survey

Department of Water Resources (DWR) snow surveyors are likely to encounter above-normal temperatures and below-normal snowpack when they conduct their second survey of the wet season on January 29.

Aquafornia news Santa Cruz Sentinel

Santa Cruz increases water supply planning deadline, budget

A year after forming a special panel to evaluate future water supply options, the Santa Cruz City Council on Tuesday agreed to extend the group’s timeline for making recommendations and increase spending for a facilitator to guide the work.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Water managers propose emergency actions after driest January on record

A city that normally sees well over 2 inches of rain in January will likely finish the month with two-hundredths of an inch. But Stockton won’t be the only community to record its driest January ever.

Aquafornia news Southern California Public Radio

Southern California’s water supply threatened by next major quake (with audio)

Southern California gets the vast majority of its water from four aqueducts that flow from the north, but all of them cross the San Andreas Fault.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Plan to raise Shasta Dam takes hit after federal biologists say they can’t support it

Less than three months after California voters approved a water bond that contains $2.7 billion for new water storage, one of the leading projects under consideration has suffered a potentially fatal setback.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Marin heads toward near-record dry January

Since the last of a series of rainstorms on Dec. 18, only 0.23 of an inch of rain has fallen, as measured by the Marin Municipal Water District at Lake Lagunitas.

Aquafornia news UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences California WaterBlog

Blog: Demystifying mist as a source of water supply

In some of the world’s driest places, atmospheric moisture is a major source of water for native ecosystems. … Some drought-minded California residents along the coast, perhaps yearning for a clear ocean view, have suggested harvesting fog as a water supply.

Aquafornia news Maven's Notebook

Blog: Bureau of Reclamation outlines Water Year 2015 Central Valley Project water supply conditions

In preparation for the initial 2015 water supply allocation announcement in late February, the Bureau of Reclamation provided an update today [Jan. 23] on water supply conditions for the federal Central Valley Project (CVP).

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

State awards $2 million to Cachuma Lake pumping project

Santa Barbara County water agencies announced Friday that they will receive $2 million in state funding for a pumping project at Cachuma Lake — a source of drinking water for 220,000 people on the southern central coast — where water levels have dropped precipitously low.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Commentary: Where’s the snow? Trips up Northern Calif. highways reveal shocking images

The winter temperature tantrum is having a mind-boggling effect across California’s high country, that much is well known.

Aquafornia news KQED Public Radio for Northern California

Blog: So how do those reservoirs look?

Just over a month ago, we were watching rain gauges fill up and going to sleep at night with visions of our reservoirs rising again after a long, punishing drought.

Aquafornia news Monterey County Herald

Marina Coast to resume pursuit of own desal plant

A split Marina Coast Water District board decided to resume its previous quest for a desalination plant, with a goal of providing a new potable water supply within two years to new development in Fort Ord, including Monterey Downs.

Aquafornia news The Modesto Bee

Turlock Irrigation District braces for another tight water year

The Turlock Irrigation District could cap water deliveries at about 40 percent of the customary amount even if the rest of winter brings average rain and snow. The district staff on Tuesday night provided an initial look at the supply for 2015, which is looking to be a fourth straight year of drought.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Commentary: Save Delta salmon — Smelt are red herring in California water wars

When you hear about water users south of the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta complaining about delta smelt forcing restrictions on water pumping, take it with a grain of salt.

Aquafornia news Maven's Notebook

Blog: Heather Cooley — ‘The Untapped Potential of California’s Water Supply’

At the Bay Delta Science Conference held last fall, Heather Cooley from the Pacific Institute gave a presentation entitled, “The Untapped Potential of California’s Water Supply,” which draws on a series of reports jointly released by both the Pacific Institute and the Natural Resources Defense Council that looks at the opportunities for expanding California’s water supply through urban and agricultural efficiency, water reuse, and stormwater capture.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

How does L.A. use its water?

For all the discussion of how the city, parks and golf courses guzzle water, the lion’s share of L.A.’s supply is sucked up by residential customers, according to data from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Slightly more water to flow to Southern California

Following winter storms, state officials have slightly increased their estimate of how much water will flow to Southern California this year through the canals and pipelines of the State Water Project.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Forecasts show drought continuing in California, Southwest

Federal agencies released a pair of forecasts showing dry conditions will persist in parts of the drought-stricken West, suggesting there won’t be enough snow to boost water supplies.

Aquafornia news Circle of Blue

Blog: World Economic Forum ranks water crises as top global risk

For the first time, water crises took the top spot in the World Economic Forum’s tenth global risk report, an annual survey of nearly 900 leaders in politics, business, and civic life about the world’s most critical issues. Water ranked third a year ago.

Aquafornia news KCRA Sacramento (with video)

Wet December leads to dry January for thirsty NorCal

In Sacramento, it has been three weeks since state weather stations received measurable rain, and as of Wednesday, the Sierra snowpack was at 38 percent of normal.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Blog: California needs better data to build trust with voters

State Sen. Lois Wolk, D-Davis, noted at a Sacramento gathering of water policy experts and elected officials on Monday that water oversight begins with figuring out how much water is needed for cities, agriculture, industry and the environment.

Aquafornia news Bay Area News Group

Recent rains provide no respite for Pleasanton lake

Despite December storms that prompted flood warnings and brought more than eight inches of rain to areas of the Tri-Valley, the much-needed precipitation did little to relieve the drought’s impact on the former gravel quarry between Livermore and Pleasanton.

Aquafornia news Inland Valley Daily Bulletin

Inland Empire water agencies shoring up supply for times of drought

Two Inland Empire water wholesale agencies, just like most consumers, are tired of dealing with the impact of drought. … The IEUA [Inland Empire Utilities Agency] and the San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District, are working to increase local supply reliability through future projects in the next decade.

Aquafornia news Santa Rosa Press Democrat

Editorial: Questions ahead on state water supply

A succession of December storms filled North Coast reservoirs to their highest level in months, but the most important gauge of California’s water storage is still stuck on drought.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Daily News

Los Angeles, looking for water wherever it can, targets freeways

As Los Angeles looks for any way it can to save water, City Council members turned their attention Wednesday to how Caltrans irrigates its landscaping along freeways.

Aquafornia news Monterey County Herald

Nacimiento, San Antonio lake levels still low after storms

Those nine inches of rain that soaked Monterey County last month? They made hardly a dent in our local water supply, officials say.

Aquafornia news Santa Cruz Sentinel

Soquel Creek district to survey all customers on water supply

Soquel Creek Water District leaders said Tuesday they want to conduct a districtwide survey of all customers before pursuing a binding vote on how to increase the water supply. Board members said they don’t want to ask voters to support a project or series of solutions without a sense of what customers want.

Aquafornia news Public Policy Institute of California

Blog: Managing—and learning from—scarcity

California is entering a fourth year of drought. The welcome, wet conditions that appeared earlier this winter gave way to dryness during the latter half of December.

Aquafornia news Appeal-Democrat

No end in sight for drought

The only answer to the question of when the drought will end is that there’s no sure answer. … The major reservoirs in Northern California are below historical averages, but they are above the levels from 2014, which is cause for cautious optimism for some northern state water contractors.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Amid flakes, snow levels don’t jettison drought worries

Snow levels that didn’t quite measure up turned a snowshoe party in the Sierra into an exercise in hand-wringing on Tuesday as it became clear that recent storms have done little to end California’s historic drought.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Snow survey shows higher snowpack, far less water content

The winter’s first survey of the Sierra Nevada snowpack found more snow than last year at this time, but officials said much more is needed to end the California drought.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Sierra Nevada snowpack levels are greater than a year ago

Measurements of Sierra Nevada snowpack on Tuesday [Dec. 30] showed more snow than surveyors recorded a year ago. But state water officials said it was far from enough to signal a potential end to California’s continuing drought.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Blog: Those trillion-gallon stories on storms, drought last week were confusing

I shared your confusion briefly last week. Readers called and emailed, wondering if the drought had ended after two separate news stories featuring the numbers 10 and 11 – each followed by 12 zeroes. We’re talking trillions of gallons of water.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Court upholds Delta protections

Rules protecting threatened salmon and steelhead were upheld Monday by an appeals court, a decision that may help the fragile Delta but also may crimp a portion of the state’s water supply.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Federal judge upholds restrictions on Delta water shipments

A federal appeals court Monday overruled objections by Central Valley farmers, water districts and a federal judge and upheld the government’s reduction of water shipments from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta in order to protect salmon, steelhead trout and other species.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Federal appeals court backs restrictions on Delta water deliveries

Ruling that water from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta is important not just for people but also for the fish that swim in it, a federal appeals court on Monday backed environmental restrictions on deliveries to urban Southern California and San Joaquin Valley agriculture.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Mt. Tam watershed reservoirs near capacity from recent storms

Unlike the rest of California, the drought is over for the moment in Marin County.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

First of three storms brings more rain to Southern California

One of three storms forecast to hit Southern California this week blew in Tuesday morning, bringing scattered showers throughout the region.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Earthquake could imperil L.A.’s water supply

Los Angeles gets 88% of its water from three major aqueducts, flowing from the Colorado River, Owens Valley and the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. … Officials have long warned that a massive temblor on the San Andreas could destroy key sections of the aqueducts, cutting off the water supply for more than 22 million people in Southern California.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Daily News

Northern California looks to beat past Decembers

There’s no way of predicting if Mother Nature will continue to shower the Bay Area when we turn the calendar to 2015, but this month is shaping up to be one of the wettest Decembers in decades — at least in some parts of the region.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

New storm drops rain across soggy California

A storm that unleashed rain on parts of Northern California already soggy from big downpours headed south in the first of a one-two punch of much-needed moisture this week.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Flood-causing deluge amounts to just drops in California drought

The strong Pacific storm that left Northern California a sodden mess will not have much impact on the state’s historic drought, meteorologists said Friday.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Heavy rains, winds, flooding slam Northern California

The powerful system was being fueled by a stream of tropical moisture up to 400 miles wide and 3,000 miles long known as an “atmospheric river.”  … National Weather Service forecasters issued a blizzard warning for parts of Northern California – the first since Jan. 4, 2008 – and said the storm overall could be the most “significant” since that year. 

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Winter storms finally starting to boost storage levels in key reservoirs

One storm does not end a drought as severe as this one, meteorologists and water managers emphasized again Thursday. But this storm and last week’s milder one have done something very important: They have saturated the parched ground across Northern California so much that rainfall is finally starting to fill up the state’s dangerously low reservoirs as it runs down streams, rivers and hillsides.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Southern California precipitation will remain the same with climate change, study finds

Overall rainfall amounts in the Los Angeles region will remain the same in coming decades, according to a new study that examined the effects of a warming climate on Southern California precipitation. The third in a series of UCLA studies on the impact of climate change on Los Angeles, the report is good news for the city’s efforts to develop more local water supplies.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: Powerful storm begins to pound Northern California

A storm expected to be one of the windiest and rainiest in five years pushed across parts of Northern California early Thursday as schools canceled classes and residents stocked up on supplies. … The storm is expected to later pound parts of Southern California before a weakening system moves east through Nevada, Idaho, Arizona and New Mexico. 

Aquafornia news Maven's Notebook

Blog: Water Supply Index (WSI) forecast for December 1, 2014

From the Department of Water Resources: Welcome to the 2015 Water Year season of water supply forecasting! The first water supply forecast has been completed.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

California water at risk from abandoned Sierra Nevada mines

Along the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada, runoff pollution from abandoned mines in “Gold Country” could threaten California’s primary water supply. A pilot project at one mine site is intended to prevent contaminated runoff from reaching the Yuba River.

Aquafornia news Bureau of Reclamation

News Release: Reclamation to hold Sacramento and San Joaquin Basins Study public meeting

The public is invited to participate in the meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2014, from 1:30-4:00 p.m. at the Bureau of Reclamation Regional Office, 2800 Cottage Way, Cafeteria Conference Room C1003 (adjacent to the Cafeteria), Sacramento, CA 95825. Interested individuals, agencies and stakeholders may participate person or online. … Reclamation will present a summary of climate change impacts and findings identified in the Sacramento and San Joaquin Basins Climate Impact Assessment, released on Sept. 22.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Seminar will discuss climate change and California water supplies

The public has a unique opportunity Tuesday to learn about how climate change may alter the availability of water in California and to offer ideas on adapting to those changes.

Aquafornia news Bay Area News Group

Drought dries rural wells, residents carry water in buckets

As California struggles through the drought, the first to suffer are rural residents with shallow private wells and limited incomes. They live in cabins in Modoc County, among the golden rolling hills of Paso Robles, in the farmworker towns of the San Joaquin Valley and a chaparral-covered valley in northern Los Angeles County.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Rains ease Marin drought concerns, provide good start for endangered coho run

The bonanza of rain over the last week has boosted Marin’s totals to above average, filled reservoirs and has allowed endangered coho salmon to make their way back to local streams sooner than normal. … And the rain is far from over with more predicted for the weekend and early next week.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Commentary: Los Angeles, city of water

Los Angeles is the nation’s water archvillain, according to public perception, notorious for its usurpation of water hundreds of miles away to slake the thirst of its ever-expanding population. … Recently, however, Los Angeles has reduced its reliance on outside sources of water.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Flash flooding strands drivers in California

Heavy downpours took a parting shot Thursday at California, triggering flash floods that temporarily stranded more than three dozen people in their cars in inland Riverside County as the state took stock of the effects of days of steady downpours.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Where 2 rivers meet, visions for Grand Canyon clash

A group of Italian developers is planning three million square feet of retail construction, plus 2,200 homes, in Tusayan, a newly incorporated village with a population of just 587 at the entrance to the park [Grand Canyon], posing what park officials describe as a major threat to the water supply for the Colorado River.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Storm soaks region, but drought’s grip still tight

Parts of the Bay Area have gotten almost as much rain in the past two days as fell all of last year. Recent storms put us well above our normal rainfall average. And — yes — we’re still in a drought.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Editorial: Enjoy the rain, but consider L.A.’s water needs

At long last, and thank goodness — the rain. … As much as we need the rain, though, what Southern California and the rest of the state really need is to refill our biggest reservoir — the Sierra snowpack — because that’s where most of our water comes from.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

California rain: ‘Six straight hours of rain,’ and drought continues

A record-setting storm covering Southern California was expected to begin tapering off Wednesday after triggering dozens of evacuations and putting city crews in Ventura and Los Angeles counties on alert for mudslides. … The storm left Northern California sopping too.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

In midst of California’s drought, a rainy day is a welcome sight

This might be the only state in the nation where a rainy day — complete with blinding sheets of water, shoe-sopping flooded intersections and chalk gray skies — puts people in a good mood. And with good reason.

Aquafornia news Maven's Notebook

Blog: Reservoir and water conditions for December 1

This post is a collection of graphic representations of current reservoir and hydrologic conditions drawn primarily from the Department of Water Resources website, as well as a few others.

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: As key California reservoir nears 37-year low, new billboards urge water conservation

Water level at Lake Oroville, the second-largest reservoir in the state water delivery system, is at 26 percent capacity and is approaching its historic low set in 1977, state water contractors announced Tuesday.

Aquafornia news KCRA Sacramento

LiveCopter3 flies over a scary-low Lake Oroville (with video)

California’s drought has taken a huge toll on Lake Oroville, the second-largest reservoir in state.

Aquafornia news U.S. Geological Survey

Blog: How much do you use? The story of water

Every five years the U.S. Geological Survey collects data from counties all over the Nation for the national water use report, a thorough document that provides water resource managers and private citizens with accurate information on how much water is being used in specific places for a wide variety of purposes.

Aquafornia news Bureau of Reclamation

News Release: Bureau of Reclamation invests $9.2 million in water and power research

Following a year of record drought, water managers throughout the west are searching for information and ideas to ensure a reliable and sustainable water supply. To meet this growing need for information, Bureau of Reclamation Principal Deputy Commissioner Estevan López announced today [Nov. 19] that Reclamation has awarded $9.2 million for 131 research projects.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Study urges thorough review of water storage projects

Voters just approved $7.5 billion dollars for new water storage projects, but a new study says it’s likely not all projects will be worth the money.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Wild, wet weather brings lightning, threats of hail, waterspouts

Another storm system slogged its way through San Francisco on Thursday, bringing much-needed rain, lightning and threats of hail and waterspouts to the region, forecasters said.

Aquafornia news Maven's Notebook

Blog: Shopping for water — How the market can mitigate water shortages in the American West

In October of 2014, the Hamilton Project and the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment hosted a forum, New Directions for U.S. Water Policy, which brought together government and agency officials with policy experts to discuss the release of new papers highlighting opportunities from improving water management in the West.

Aquafornia news KQED Public Media for Northern CA

Blog: Designing California cities for a long-term drought (with audio)

Let’s consider the possibility that this drought we’re in could last more than than just a few dry years. … Meanwhile, most Californians live in cities designed, to a great extent, on the promise of nearly endless water, imported from wetter parts of the state via massive engineering projects like the California State Water Project.

Aquafornia news Valley Public Radio

Drought brings boom for water delivery trucks

It’s the dead of autumn and there’s no sign that the California drought will ease up. When wells run dry the immediate answer is to dig a new one, but they’re expensive. In some parts of the state there’s been an uptick in water theft, but in Central California many homeowners are turning to a legal water solution that’s not dependent on city water lines.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

California drought hits San Mateo County coast particularly hard

The historic statewide drought has struck especially hard along the southern San Mateo County coast. While other parts of the Bay Area are served by big water agencies with steady if shrinking supplies, most of the homes and small farms here, less than an hour’s drive from Silicon Valley, rely on creeks and wells, many of which have stopped flowing.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Q&A: Rain barely made a dent in California drought

Fall has arrived, but in Southern California, warm, dry conditions remain. While the state has received some rain in recent weeks, the overall picture remains largely unchanged.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

California drought not likely to end this winter, experts say

As California heads into its annual rainy season, water managers, farmers and millions of residents with parched yards are hoping huge storms will finally break the state’s historic three-year drought. Don’t count on it.

Aquafornia news Brookings Institution

Blog: Tidal wave or drop in the bucket? Differences in water use across the United States

A serious drought in the American West has called national attention to our country’s water resources. U.S. businesses report substantial concerns over water supply, while the current drought in California has cost the state billions of dollars in economic losses.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Water levels in California’s reservoirs continue to drop

Statewide all reservoirs – more than 150 of them – hold about 57-percent of the water they normally do.

Aquafornia news Monterey County Herald

Hydrology hypotheses: can we make our own water?

Imagine harvesting your own water — no water utility, no monthly water bill. Instead, you have equipped your home with a rain catchment system or atmospheric water generator, and connected it to your tap. Monterey will soon be a site for just such an experiment.

Aquafornia news Circle of Blue

Blog: Earth’s major aquifers are in trouble

The world is perilously ignoring the water crisis that is occurring underfoot, writes Jay Famiglietti in the journal Nature Climate Change. A professor of Earth system science at the University of California, Irvine, Famiglietti has helped refine the premier tool for understanding large-scale changes in groundwater reserves.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Nevada Irrigation District suspends some water deliveries

The Nevada Irrigation District has suspended delivery of fall irrigation water for the first time in more than 20 years, a move intended to preserve water supplies during California’s ongoing drought.

Aquafornia news Imperial Valley Press

Report: $7.5 billion water bond may not produce ‘real improvements’

A report released Thursday cautions that the $7.5 billion water bond on California’s November ballot may not yield “real improvements” to the state’s water supply or environment.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: For Sierra resident, the well runs dry — along with her options

Things were bad enough for Rochelle Landers before her well went dry. … She has an acre in the Sierra foothills, in a sparsely populated town an hour northeast of Sacramento with a seemingly abundant water supply despite the drought.

Aquafornia news UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences California WaterBlog

Blog: Flagging problem dams for fish survival

This drought year, as in those past, California water regulators have given away to cities and farms some river flows critical to fish and wildlife. … There are, however, legal backstops to prevent harmful reductions in fish flows, even during a drought as severe as this one.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

San Gabriel Valley water agency declares water supply emergency

The Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District declared a water supply emergency Wednesday amid record-low levels.

Aquafornia news Santa Rosa Press Democrat

PG&E plan may reduce water flowing into Lake Mendocino

A plan by PG&E to temporarily shut down a powerhouse that feeds water from the Eel River to the Russian River may cut into consumer supplies this winter by further reducing the amount of water coming into Lake Mendocino.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Gov. Jerry Brown touts water bond measure at Stanford summit

Gov. Jerry Brown pitched his plan Monday for a water bond and a rainy-day fund at a Stanford University water conference. … He called his water plan a “four-term effort.”

Aquafornia news NPR

As their wells run dry, California residents blame thirsty farms

Imagine flushing the toilet and watching sand come up.

Aquafornia news Santa Cruz Sentinel

Santa Cruzans drink up water source solutions

Even ideas are being conserved as Santa Cruz continues its hunt for alternative water supply solutions. … The so-called ideas convention was hosted by the city’s 14-member Water Supply Advisory Committee.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Temperance Dam plan is flawed, critics say at Fresno forum

About 100 people listened at a public meeting in Fresno to sometimes passionate statements from speakers who faulted everything from the feasibility analysis to the notification for the hearing on the draft Environmental Impact Statement for Temperance Flat Reservoir.

Aquafornia news The Washington Post

The West is bone dry. Here’s how to help

Drought is rampant these days in many parts of the American West, so consider this a pretty sweet gift: You’ve just been given the rights to some water. … Your job is to turn around and use that resource in the most valuable way possible.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

The risks of cheap water

This summer, California’s water authority declared that wasting water — hosing a sidewalk, for example — was a crime. Next door, in Nevada, Las Vegas has paid out $200 million over the last decade for homes and businesses to pull out their lawns.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Big debut for 1st-of-its-kind water tunnel below San Francisco Bay

This week, the $288 million tunnel begins carrying the Bay Area’s water supply from the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir in Yosemite National Park to the Peninsula, bolstering the dependability of the region’s water system.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Lake Oroville inches closer to record low

Only time and nature will determine whether Lake Oroville will continue its steady drop or begin to climb back. On Monday, the lake was at a low water elevation of 670 feet. Capacity is 900 feet.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Prop. 1, Prop. 2 backers oversimplify wildfire costs

The campaign for a $7.5 billion water bond and a budget reserve measure is running a TV ad that says reserves will help “protect the water and the fire services we need” in future economic downturns.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Obama to declare national monument in San Gabriels

The lure of a San Gabriel Mountains wilderness teeming with wildlife, rivers and breathtaking panoramas is so strong that it now draws 3 million annual visitors whose presence, paradoxically, has overrun the region and degraded its beauty. President Obama will address that reality Friday by announcing that he is designating part of the mountains a national monument.

Aquafornia news Bureau of Reclamation

News Release: Central Valley Project begins Water Year 2015 with 3.1 million acre-feet of storage

The Bureau of Reclamation’s Central Valley Project began water year 2015 (Oct. 1, 2014, to Sept. 30, 2015) with 3.1 million acre-feet of water in six key CVP reservoirs (Shasta, Trinity, Folsom, New Melones, and Millerton reservoirs and the federal share of the joint federal/state San Luis Reservoir). This is less than half of the 15-year average annual carryover of 6.4 million acre-feet and about 2 million acre-feet less than the amount with which the region started WY 2014.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Could those empty San Joaquin Valley reservoirs fill up in one winter?

In mid-September 1977, the 326 billion-gallon Pine Flat Reservoir sat nearly empty — holding 6% of capacity in a warm puddle.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

With dry taps and toilets, California drought turns desperate

In the Gallegos household and more than 500 others in Tulare County, residents cannot flush a toilet, fill a drinking glass, wash dishes or clothes, or even rinse their hands without reaching for a bottle or bucket. Unlike the Okies who came here fleeing the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, the people now living on this parched land are stuck.

Aquafornia news Santa Rosa Press Democrat

North Coast water woes reflected in dwindling reservoirs

California turned the page this week on the fourth-driest water year on record, an occasion marked on the North Coast by dwindling reservoir supplies and restrictions on water use.

Aquafornia news Circle of Blue

Blog: Western U.S. governors begin drought discussions

In the midst of a record-smashing dry cycle in the United States, the organization with the most influence over state and federal drought policy wants to do a better job managing the crisis. … On September 18 and 19, the Western Governors’ Association, a forum for state leaders, will welcome to Norman, Oklahoma, agency officials, industry representatives, and technical experts who will offer insight on how a multi-year drought in the western United States is challenging the energy sector.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Drought has Yankee Hill mobile home park on the edge of bone dry

Help will soon be on the way for about 100 residents who live in the Big Bend Mountain Mobile Home Park in Yankee Hill. … Luckily, the park was added to a list for emergency water supply funds, with money recently approved by the state.