U.S. EIA: “Record Precipitation, Snowpack in California”

Watts Up With That?

Guest post by David Middleton

main Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture Drought Monitor

MARCH 22, 2017

Record precipitation, snowpack in California expected to increase hydro generation in 2017

For the first time since 2011, California’s drought is significantly weakening—a result of one of the wettest winters on record. California has experienced record levels of precipitation this winter, and unlike last winter, cooler temperatures over the 2016–2017 winter season have enabled the precipitation to build up snowpack (the total accumulated snow and ice on the ground). High precipitation and snowpack levels, both of which supply hydroelectric generators throughout the year, suggest that hydroelectric generation in California in 2017 will significantly exceed 2016 levels.

Although the drought state of emergency declared by California authorities in January 2014 is still in place, drought conditions have noticeably improved, and the northern half of the state is no longer classified in any stage of drought severity…

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