January 29, 2020
Water planners brace for 6th year of drought
SOUTHLAND – (INT) – Southern California water suppliers are bracing for a possible sixth year of drought.

A new ‘water year’ began this month and officials outlined their plans Monday to meet the region’s water needs. The bottom line was continued conservation.

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD) is maintaining a Water Supply Alert calling for continued awareness and reinforced conservation throughout the district’s 5,200-square-mile service area.

“The reality is that California is still in a drought. We’re just not in a state of emergency,” MWD Board Chairman Randy Record said Monday.

While much of Northern California got some drought relief with last winter's rain and snow, "Without more storms this winter, the state will quickly be facing the same severe conditions we saw in 2014 and 2015,” said Mark Cowin, director of the California Department of Water Resources.

State Water Project (SWP) reservoir storage is below historical averages. SWP deliveries—accounting for about a third of the Southland’s annual supplies—also face continued reductions because of pumping restrictions to protect fish species.

The Colorado River drought continues. After 16 drought years, storage in the system’s two huge reservoirs—Lake Mead and Lake Powell—is at less than 40 percent, increasing the risk of shortage conditions in coming years.
Story Date: October 27, 2016
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