June 16, 2019
Sierra snowpack reflects climate change
SACRAMENTO – (INT) – An initial check of the winter snowpack in the Sierra Nevada is positive.

Although it is 67 percent of average for early January and is much deeper than a year ago, the water content of the snowpack is below normal.

The State Department of Water Resources (DWR) points out that climate change has shifted the balance of rain and snow, with rain falling at higher elevations than in the past.

“What a profound impact climate change has on our water resources,” said DWR Director Karla Nemeth. “California’s significant weather variability means we can go from historic drought to record rainfall, with nothing in between. Climate change will continue to exacerbate the extremes, creating additional challenges for maintaining water supply reliability and the need for innovative solutions.”

About two-thirds of California’s annual rainfall occurs December through March.

“We still have three wet season months ahead of us, so there’s time for the snowpack to build and improve before it begins to melt, which usually starts happening around April 1,” said DWR State Climatologist Michael Anderson.
Story Date: January 30, 2019
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