[LA FEATURE] Running Dry

LA FEATURE

Coverage of California's three-year dry spell, one of the most severe droughts on record

Rainfall Does Little to Quench CA Drought

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    NEWSLETTERS

    This graph shows the rain deficit on March 4, 2014 compared to a normal rain year in California.

    The recent rain was a welcome relief for everyone concerned about the drought.

    Snow Arrives in Big Bear

    [LA] Snow Arrives in Big Bear
    The strong system that has pounded Southern California for the last few days is bringing a plethora of snow to Big Bear and other mountain areas. Hotel officials are relieved that natural snow is hitting the mountains that have been starved due to the state drought. Crystal Eggers reports for Today in LA on Saturday, March 1, 2014. (Published Saturday, Mar 1, 2014)

    However, it was a drop in the bucket compared to the average level of precipitation that we are used to getting by this time of year. It helped save one area, the Southern Sierra Mountains, from having the driest season on record.

    Rain Makes Small Dent in Drought

    [LA] Rain Makes Small Dent in Drought
    The heavy rains of the past week are not enough to pull California out of dought, but captured runoff will provide long-lasting benefits reducing the drought's impact.. Patrick Healy reports from the Rio Hondo Spreading Grounds in Montebello for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on March 3, 2014. (Published Monday, Mar 3, 2014)

    There have been two winters that were drier 1976-1977, and 1923-1924 which was the driest according to the California Department of Water Resources.

    Precipitation in the Southern Sierra Mountains is a major source of water for Southern California. There are five monitoring stations that keep track of precipitation.

    The chart shows levels before the storm, after the storm, and what the average precipitation has been in the past. We are currently about half way to the average precipitation with only two months left in the rainy season.

    The LA County of Public Works estimates that this weekend's storm will supply drinking water to more than 144,000 people for a year.

    LA County has taken steps to increase the amount of stormwater that can be recovered from the mountains.

    Equipment upgrades have enabled the storage capability of Morris Reservoir above Azusa to be increased 10 percent.
     

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