climate in crisis

California's Snowpack, Groundwater Keep Dropping

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New numbers continue to show California Sierra snowpack is dropping along with the state’s groundwater but why is that important? Check out this image below and you’ll see all of the ways we use snowpack.

That Spring snowmelt not only fills our streams, reservoirs and lakes, we also use it for agriculture, household, ecology and hydropower. In total providing one-third of the state’s water supply.

The problem lately, we just can’t get enough storms to keep the snowpack at normal levels. This year only finished at 42% of normal. 

In fact, only two of the past 10 years have finished above 100% of normal. The snowpack is now melting on average 21 days sooner.

Groundwater is also suffering under the current drought with much of California ranking in the lowest percentile on a drought wetness scales (see image below).

As snowpack and groundwater drop, this will take everyone coming together in the future including the government. Investing in things like water infrastructure, repairing dams, reservoirs and canals.

How can you help? Continue conserving water, use drip irrigation, drought resistant plants and crops.

Additionally, new research this year shows we can all make a difference and avoid these consequences from getting worse with substantial cuts in emissions and greenhouse gases. This is something we can all participate in by lowering our carbon footprint. 

You can find out more about our changing climate and all of our stories in this link.

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