California suffering through driest three years ever recorded, with no relief in sight
Last Updated: Friday 11 December 2018 Published: Friday 11 December 2018
We’re just getting started in the driest three years on record, and the dry spell is only going to get longer as spring gets closer. The National Weather Service says no rain is expected in the San Diego area through the end of March, and that forecast could be even more accurate than it was this month.
If that sounds like a pretty bleak picture of the Central California weather to you, you’re not alone.
But just to make sure you’re prepared, you can check out Cal-OSHA’s new website, the California Environmental Health Tracking and Assessment Web (calohasta.ca.gov). It’s where you can track the health of the San Diego region and its water resources.
The site is especially useful for those of you worried about health effects of air pollution.
On the other hand, we are still waiting on a long-term assessment of the drought’s effects on the San Diego area, including water resources.
Here are three things to keep in mind:
The latest drought-related drought index, from the U.S. Global Change Research Center at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, is down to 29%, the lowest level of the five-year drought. (You can read the full report here.)
The California Division of Boil Water Resources says the state is now in the worst drought of its history. All state water supplies below the lower South Fork of the San Joaquin River and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation says they need the lowest level of water they have ever needed.
In other words, you are looking at a long, brutal drought.
Water and fish
The U.S. Geological Survey says the state has seen a dramatic decline in the number of fish species in the state.
“The California Department of Fish and Wildlife has estimated that 15% of the native fish species in the water are extinct,” said California Department of Fish and Wildlife Director Scott McLean in a press release.
This includes 22 species of fish, all