The California Department of Water Resources announced that snowpack levels have reached nearly 250%, the Globe reported Tuesday. Specifically, the Northern Sierra region is currently at 209% of snowpack, with the Central Sierra/Tahoe region coming in at 246%, and the Southern Sierra region, which largely feeds the Central Valley and Southern areas of the state, at 288%.
“Local water supply authorities warn that residents and property owners should continue to conserve water and behave as though drought conditions will persist through the winter,” Metro Silicon Valley reported.
Why can’t we trust California’s water boards of directors? How can any of them order water users to act as though drought conditions will persist through the winter, as the Silicon Valley Water Board has done.
According to rain gauge reports on Valley Water’s website, areas in Santa Clara County have received from 20-40 inches of rain so far this winter, Metro Silicon Valley reported. “The average annual rainfall for South County is about 24 inches.”
Yet the Valley Water Board website screams “Santa Clara County is in a Severe Drought,” and “Let’s Say Yes to Saving Water.”
It’s also “Climate Change,” which predominates their website along with “Severe Drought” warnings.
The bulk of the front page of the Valley Water Board website is about water conservation: Indoor and outdoor water conservation; landscape guides, reporting water wasters, water saving devices, and the like.
Yet Metro Silicon Valley reports and shows a photo of “Uvas Creek at Christmas Hill Park is shown overflowing earlier in January.”
While the county is flooding in some areas, the website steadfastly insists, “Santa Clara County is in a severe drought emergency. Learn about the latest developments and regulations by visiting our Drought Information page.”
Looking at the map of Santa Clara County below, I count 12 reservoirs spaced throughout the county.
“In spite of the recent rain, Santa Clara County remains in a drought emergency,” Valley Water spokesperson Matt Keller asserts, Metro Silicon Valley reports.
Reservoirs across the state are filling up rapidly with the storms. Four reservoirs in Santa Clara County alone topped out at over 100% capacity, with others, while still under capacity, are quickly approaching average January levels, the Globe reported. Shasta currently sits at 80% normal January capacity, with Oroville currently at 99%. Others include Don Pedro at 103%, Camanche at 122%, and Folsom being at 110%. In Southern California, reservoir levels are also better than expected, with Diamond Valley at 84% and LA County alone catching 33 billion gallons of rainwater for later public use – enough to supply over 800,000 people with water for a whole year.
Why can’t bureaucrats act like real people? Why can’t they acknowledge the blessed current abundance of rain and snow, and talk about how wonderful it is, filling up reservoirs, and replenishing aquifers and groundwater, while reminding water users to always remain water vigilant?
As we have yet another storm rolling in this evening in Northern California, I am reminded that the state’s reservoirs were designed to hold 7 years worth of water for the state. But the State Water Resources Control Board authorized half of California’s water to run out to the ocean every year. The second half is shared between urban users (cities) at 10% and agriculture at 40%. Some non-indigenous fish and environmental needs are prioritized ahead of humans and agriculture – food for humans.
Remember, droughts are naturally occurring; water shortages are created by government.
California’s “drought” won’t be over until we stop emptying our reservoirs into the ocean.