California Water Watch tracks the most current local and statewide water conditions, with information updated from multiple sources. Information gathered from the various sources acknowledges that the historic drought, entering its fourth year, continues in a detrimental manner.
The California Water Watch Home Page at https://cww.water.ca.gov shows a drone view of Castaic Lake, by the dam on Castaic Creek in the Sierra Pelona Mountains on September 13th, an indicator of how low the water level has dropped. Reservoir levels, such as Castaic Lake, were impaired for the past three years by a declining snowpack, the Water Watch website stated. California depends on the network of reservoirs during dry years.
“Climate change has fundamentally altered our state’s hydrologic system – intensifying extreme weather and leading to longer, drier periods,’ the Water Watch page stated, noting the need for everyone to use less water.
“We ended Water Year 2022 on September 30 following a year featuring continued extreme drought with historically dry months and a record-shattering heatwave,” the website added.
In 2022, the water year ended with a statewide precipitation average of 17.9 inches, equal to 76% of historical average. Reservoir storage statewide ended the water year at 14.70 million acre-feet, or 69% of historical average.
According to the Water Watch website, “A growing body of evidence is starting to show that our current drought is an extension of the 2012-2016 drought, interrupted by just a few wet years.”