Sacramento, California, and the Sierra Nevada have been abnormally dry for the fourth straight winter. Last year, fall began with the hope that the drought would be broken, but it didn’t happen.
With the exception of a heavy rain in December and one in February, Sacramento has been dry.
Last year was the hottest year in Sacramento history, states the Sacramento Bee newspaper. The lack of rain was noticeable in January – which is normally rainy – when just 0.01 of an inch was recorded in Sacramento.
Reports state that the winter did not deliver much snow to the Sierra Nevada. California’s water supplies are reliant on mountain snowpack that melts in the spring and fills reservoirs for summer use in cities and on farms.
A recent snowpack survey showed that statewide, the California mountains have just 13 percent of the snowpack normal for this time of year, states the Sacramento Bee website.
“Generally our snowpack accounts for about a third of our state water supply,” said Brooke Bingaman, weather service meteorologist.
“Not all of the 13 percent snowpack will end up in the reservoirs, some of it will soak into the ground. So the level our reservoirs are at now is essentially what we will have for the rest of the summer.”