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donsutherland1

Ongoing California Drought May Be Most Severe Since the 16th Century

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We probably won't see any major drought reduction in tomorrow's Drought Monitor update, but the recent pattern is a start. Rainfall amounts this month are already 3-4+ times as much as the region saw all of last January.

 

Definitely. And here, it's ∞ times since we didn't receive any measureable rainfall last Jan :P

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Fat lady is singing. At least we got some rain in NorCal, SoCal barely got anything, mostly in December. The background state of a drier west coast (could be caused by climate change, PDO, NAO, or other external factors) has overwhelmed the Nino signal.

 

CA has been getting drier over the past few decades. Hadley cell expansion? Can't see that changing anytime soon. This is the new norm, and CA has to find new ways of getting water for its ever expanding population soon.

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Fat lady is singing. At least we got some rain in NorCal, SoCal barely got anything, mostly in December. The background state of a drier west coast (could be caused by climate change, PDO, NAO, or other external factors) has overwhelmed the Nino signal.

 

CA has been getting drier over the past few decades. Hadley cell expansion? Can't see that changing anytime soon. This is the new norm, and CA has to find new ways of getting water for its ever expanding population soon.

Most likely the warming of the Pacific/Indian basins and the attendant Hadley expansion have been the long-term climatic signals favoring drier conditions in CA. The overuse of local resources is worrisome in light of the overall changes in the global climate system. At some point, conditions and overpopulation could make parts of the state uninhabitable, barring technological evolution, which is always likely to help people cope with change. The question is whether there is some point at which even larger sacrifices besides conservation will need to be made.

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Most likely the warming of the Pacific/Indian basins and the attendant Hadley expansion have been the long-term climatic signals favoring drier conditions in CA. The overuse of local resources is worrisome in light of the overall changes in the global climate system. At some point, conditions and overpopulation could make parts of the state uninhabitable, barring technological evolution, which is always likely to help people cope with change. The question is whether there is some point at which even larger sacrifices besides conservation will need to be made.

 

Desalinization will probably become a necessary source of water within the century. Hopefully we'll have that technology cheap enough for commercial use by 2050. That may save CA as it becomes a desert.

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Big event(s) coming up, especially for north and central California, although it's really a full west coast wet period.

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Good to see what appears to be a very rain pattern setting up for California. Just looked at the latest from the Euro (3/1/16 12z) and over the next 10 days (through 12z on 3/11/16) it's showing the following rain totals for the Bay Area/Central California:

 

STS: 7.82 inches

SFO: 5.94 inches

SJC: 5.59 inches

OAK: 5.30 inches

MRY: 5.26 inches

SNS: 4.41 inches

 

Hopefully these amounts are doubled by the end of March to partially make up for a lousy February (at least as far as rain is concerned).

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Looks like SoCal will get several moderate rain events over the next week or so. Maybe this can help them catch up a bit to their more fortunate neighbors to the north?

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Hello I just moved to Sacramento from Massachusetts, and was an avid snow lover who posted in the New England forum.  

 

So... since obviously I won't be seeing snow anytime ever (?), I'd like to learn how/where Northern CA gets its rain during the rainy season. Where do the areas of Low pressure form that brings such rains - do they come eclusely off of the Pacific ocean? Instead of rooting for N'Easters coming up the East Coast with a high anchored to the north, what should I be rooting for to see not only N. CA, but for Southern CA to get some good rains?

 

Also, When should I expect the models to begin showing precipitation coming to the area? And why does CA have a "Rainy season"? Why can't we see rain during the summer months for instance?

 

Thanks.

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I'm not a met, but here are a few basics:

1. No Gulf Stream to transport heat and moisture up the coast. No Gulf of Mexico to contribute from the southwest.

2. Semipermanent high pressure over the southwestern US and placement of jet stream determines a lot... in summer, jet stream is way north. In winter, jet stream dips south and you can get storms coming in from the Pacific.

3. Rain shadow from coast ranges - many areas on the coast near SFO average 30" of rain a year while the Central Valley less than half that.

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