California Drought; Getting Worse Than Ever

California has had a drought that is worse than ever.

When California officials measured the state’s snowpack in April, they declared it was at the lowest level in 50 years as a four-year drought dragged on.

But, according to Takecare, turns out they were off by 450 years. A new analysis published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change shows that the snowpack, which came in at just 6 percent of average, was at its lowest in five centuries. By late May, the snowpack was gone.

People have taken to social media to #PrayForRain. Twitter and Instagram show how desperate people are for rain in California.

Ryan Griffith started capturing still footage from Brown’s Ravine at the Folsom Lake Marina and developed a time lapse video of the diminishing water.

The lake,” a well-known recreation area, also supplied water to half a million people in Northern California. But in early September, the water levels dropped so low that state officials deemed it close to being at dead-pool level, meaning the amount of H2O in the reservoir was so small that it was nearly impossible to pump it out to consumers. The lake is just 18 percent full, according to the California Department of Water Resources.”

A week ago, “some California farmers agreed to voluntarily reduce their water use by 25 percent, a sign of just how desperate the Golden State’s situation has become.”

This all comes down to climate change. The state, the country, and the world need to do something in order to stop not only these droughts that are happening worldwide, but the other effects of global warming as well.

Drought conditions also affected Eastern Europe, Africa, the Caribbean, and Central America during August, with combined economic losses of more than $2.6 billion occurring in Romania, Czech Republic, and Poland.

Lakes and rivers are not the only ones suffering the consequences of the worldwide drought. Studies suggest that large trees, which play keystone roles in forests and can be disproportionately important to ecosystem carbon storage and hydrology, exhibit greater sensitivity to drought than small trees.

Drought-induced forest decline results in climate feedbacks including reduced CO2 uptake, reduced carbon stocks, increased albedo and decreased evapotranspiration. The impact of drought on forest structure and function depends on which trees are most adversely affected; greater mortality of small trees may modify future forest succession whereas mortality of large trees causes disproportionate losses of carbon and ecosystem function.

 

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