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Drought

California Rain
This weekend’s rains in Southern California – potentially the area’s largest rain event this decade – have potential to both improve water supplies and create flash flooding events. Rod Bain has the story.

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drought

Courtesy: NOAA Climate Prediction Center

Everett Griner talks about the possibilities of the drought continuing in 2017 in today’s Agri View. Hear Everett’s report and learn more. →


Much of California moves away from drought conditions, although the continued precipitation now means greater risk of damaging floods.

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Sometimes, it takes a dry sense of humor to deal with a years-long drought—especially when you’ve watched a wave of storms hammer Northern California and realize your end of the state is missing out. “Better rain dances” is what Ken Doty said he’d need to alleviate the parched conditions at his Goleta orchards, where he grows avocados and citrus.
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Drenching Rains
January has brought drenching rains to a majority of California. Some areas have seen four times the historical precipitation average. The recent storms are putting a dent in the state’s prolonged drought, but experts say more rain is probably needed. Continue reading

Reservoir Replenishment
Although some areas of the West have seen more rain than snow this wet season, the effect has been positive for the region’s water reservoirs. Rod Bain as the story.

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USDA meteorologist, Brad Rippey, discusses the condition of mountain snowpack totals in the West over the last three months.

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facts
There could be agricultural implications if current forecasts for La Nina turn out to be true.

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water bill
A national water bill with drought provisions for California was signed into law which means increased water deliveries to San Joaquin Valley and Southern California farms and businesses. Continue reading

water bill
The FY17 Water Resources Development Act is now on the President’s desk, after passing both the House and the Senate late last week. The water bill includes drought relief legislation for California. Continue reading

one drought areas
The U.S. Drought Monitor shows roughly 11 percent of the contiguous United States is under what it calls “severe, extreme, or exceptional” drought. Continue reading

Pine Beetle Damaged Forest
Pine trees in California forests will die out and give way to brush and chaparral, forestry experts warn, unless agencies undertake what one analyst called a “massive effort” to reduce fuels and replant trees. Otherwise, the conversion to chaparral could further increase risk of wildfires and affect the state’s water supply.
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Accurate Evapotranspiration
Getting an accurate evapostranspiration rate for locations in your production can be an important practice in surviving the prolonged drought in California.

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by Josué Medellín-Azuara, Duncan MacEwan, Richard E. Howitt, Daniel A. Sumner, and Jay R. Lund

The drought continues for California’s agriculture in 2016, but with much less severe and widespread impacts than in the two previous drought years, 2014 and 2015.  Winter and spring were wetter in the Sacramento Valley, to the extent of several reservoirs being required to spill water for flood control, but south of the Delta was unusually dry.  The much-heralded El Nino brought largely average precipitation north of the Delta, replenishing some groundwater, and drier than average conditions to the southern Central Valley and southern California. The historical pattern of increasing water exports from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta in these circumstances was less available due to environmental restrictions on Delta pumping.  Some concerns also remain for water supplies north of the Delta regarding temperature releases from Shasta reservoir. The overall estimated impacts of the 2016 drought on agriculture are summarized in the table below. Continue reading

From: UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences (California Water Blog)

by Josué Medellín-Azuara, Duncan MacEwan, Richard E. Howitt, Daniel A. Sumner, and Jay R. Lund

UC Davis Center for Watershed SciencesThe drought continues for California’s agriculture in 2016, but with much less severe and widespread impacts than in the two previous drought years, 2014 and 2015.  Winter and spring were wetter in the Sacramento Valley, to the extent of several reservoirs being required to spill water for flood control, but south of the Delta was unusually dry. Learn more. →

Donner Lake Will Benefit from First Multi-Party Water Exchange under Truckee River Operating Agreement

Donner Lake waterThe Truckee River Operating Agreement (TROA) implemented in December 2015 provides new mechanisms for federal, states (California and Nevada), tribal and local agencies to address unique and challenging water management issues.  This week, parties to TROA exhibited flexibility and cooperation by agreeing to a series of water exchange transactions, allowed under TROA, to maintain higher water levels at Donner Lake through August. Continue reading

BMP survey

Best Management Practices (BMP) Survey Deadline Extended Thru August 8

The DWR Sustainable Groundwater Management Program has developed a BMP Survey to help rank initial BMP development for the sustainable management of groundwater basins. The survey is an opportunity for practitioners and members of the public to provide direct input on the BMPs considered of importance in their respective basins.

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By: Ernie Neff

California Citrus

While the situation has improved this year, lack of available water led to the removal of 25,000 to 30,000 acres of California citrus last year.

Asian citrus psyllids are detected sporadically in the San Joaquin Valley — home to most California oranges and mandarins — and are endemic in Southern California lemon country. But as far as anyone knows, the pests that spread HLB in Florida and Texas have not spread the disease into California’s commercial citrus groves. California HLB detections have been limited to 17 trees in the urban Los Angeles area. Continue reading

Hmong farmers getting help from UC Cooperative Extension to weather the drought

22 percent had wells run dry; 51 percent reported decreased water flow

UCCE advisor Ruth Dahlquist-Willard (right) demonstrates how to evaluate soil moisture with a soil sampler. In the center is UCCE Hmong ag assistant Michael Yang.

UCCE advisor Ruth Dahlquist-Willard (right) demonstrates how to evaluate soil moisture with a soil sampler. In the center is UCCE Hmong ag assistant Michael Yang.

After the Central Valley Hmong Agriculture radio show last week, the phones at the UC Cooperative Extension office in Fresno County were buzzing non-stop with farmers anxious to apply for state grants to improve irrigation systems and energy efficiency. Michael Yang, UCCE Hmong agricultural assistant, has hosted the one-hour show each Tuesday afternoon on KBIF 900 AM for 19 years.

“Sometimes we don’t see the farmers that often. They are busy on the farm,” Yang said. “But when they hear something (important) like this on the radio, they show up.” Continue reading

SGMA timelines
Environmental groups are wanting to speed up SGMA timelines. Agriculture leaders say that time is needed for producers to plan.

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