Wednesday, March 15, 2017

California: The Government We Deserve

Do you know the way to (Lake) San Jose? (Chron photo)
If we have about a quarter of an inch of rain by July, it will be California's wettest year. [bold added]
According to Golden Gate Weather Services, this year’s rainy season, going back to July, has seen just 0.27 inches less than the record-setting 28.30 inches of rain that had fallen — on average across the state — at this point in the soggy 1968-69 rain year.

Meanwhile, precipitation in the northern Sierra, which is crucial to the state’s fickle water supply, is tracking ahead of any previous year. As of Thursday, an average 77.8 inches of precipitation had fallen between Mount Shasta and Lake Tahoe since Oct. 1 — about 212 percent of average for the period, according to the state Department of Water Resources.
The good water news may well continue:
Federal forecasters said Thursday that the chances of an El Niño developing by fall are on the rise — now between 50 and 55 percent —an outlook that could skew the odds in favor of yet another wet winter.
Oroville spillway: we don't even maintain
the dams we do have (Chron photo)
The drought is over, but it would have been nice if California had built dams or reservoirs to store all this excess water for a not-rainy day.
Now, California is experiencing near-record rain and snowfall. Had the state simply completed its half-century-old water master plan, dozens of new reservoirs would now be storing the runoff, ensuring that the state could be drought-proof for years.

Instead, more than 20 million acre-feet of precious water have already been released to the sea. There is nowhere to put it, given that California has not built a major reservoir in nearly 40 years....

Governors who cannot build a reservoir have little business fantasizing about 200-mph super trains.
When California experiences another water shortage in 3, 5, or 10 years officials will blame carbon emissions that cause climate change that cause the drought. And Californians will accept the fines for watering lawns and washing cars, because the water shortage will be all our fault.

We get the government we deserve.

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