Nearly 100 percent of the state has been classified as being free of drought. This has been a result of one of the wettest winters that has replenished lakes, reservoirs throughout the state
For the first time in 7 long years, California has officially been declared drought-free reports Reuters. This has resulted in the re-emergence of flora that had not been seen for quite some before. The reason for this - unusually abundant winter rain as well as snowfall across the state. Data of the government’s weekly report on the U.S. drought conditions is proof of this. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor’s latest survey, there has been an extraordinary turnaround from the dire and prolonged spells of dry weather that had been the norm in recent years in the state. These dry spells had wreaked havoc on irrigation supplies to farmers as well as the vegetation, forcing strict household conservation measures. Then there was also a spate of deadly and devastating wildfires. Despite the welcome change in the climatic conditions, not all areas in the state have joined the party. A more or less small patch in the southernmost region of the state including most of San Diego County has still been labeled as 'abnormally dry' on the drought map index. Another area that is still dry is a small patch at California's extreme northern end along the Oregon border.
The drought free status of the states comes for the first time since mid-December of 2011. Nearly 100 percent of the state has been classified as being free of drought. In addition to this, conditions have also been classified as normal across 93 percent of California. Even just a year ago, as much as 70 percent of the state was still classified as suffering from moderate to severe drought. So the present condition marks a major and drastic improvement over a period of just one year
#DroughtMonitor declares #California drought-free -- only a tiny 6% remaining "abnormally dry" -- as precipitation and snowpack totals surge far above year-total averages long before typical year-end measures. via @SacBee https://t.co/YMbThxSIGp pic.twitter.com/rbu44JBtC4— CalWA (@CAWaterAlliance) March 15, 2019
"It’s been a great winter for the West.” The California drought is officially over after more than seven years. https://t.co/ruF84zK4uW— Joel D. Anderson (@byjoelanderson) March 15, 2019
The crucial factor in the state achieving this drought free status was the fact that the last winter season was one of the wettest recorded in the state. This, in turn, was due to a number of Pacific storms that have replenished lakes and reservoirs. This has also left the Sierra Nevada mountain snowpack, the state’s largest single source of fresh surface water, well above normal. According to a report in the LA Times, about 580 billion gallons of water were added to reservoirs across the state.
In fact, the levels in the snowpack in the Sierra Nevada, doubled and then doubled again in February, the report further added. “The reservoirs are full, lakes are full, the streams are flowing, there’s tons of snow,” said Jessica Blunden, a climate scientist with the National Climatic Data Center at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. She further confirmed, "All the drought is officially gone.”
It was just three years ago when the Sierra snowpack had dwindled to virtually zero.
In early 2017, Jerry Brown, the then-Governor rescinded a statewide drought declaration following record rainfall. Experts say swings from drought to deluge, or the reverse, are a pointer to the weather extremes that the state can be expected to experience in an era of climate change. “Dry conditions can easily creep back in,” Jessica Blunden, added. Well-above-average precipitation this winter across the wider U.S. West has helped ease drought conditions throughout much of the region.
This filled reservoirs and restoring sparse snowpacks but also causing avalanche hazards in Colorado, the Drought Monitor summary said. The weekly report is prepared by experts from NOAA, the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska, the U.S. Agriculture Department. The result of drought-free conditions has been a widespread bloom and tremendous growth of vegetation that's never seen before. Residents from across the state are sharing some breathtaking images relating to the bloom. Posting pictures of a meadow filled with flowers, Sue Hamel highlighted onTwitter, how the state battled wildfires, droughts and then came the blessing of winter rains had led to "a gloriously display of Springtime Wild Flowers."
Here’s a closer look at California's #superbloom ! Our unusually persistent December, January and February rain showers have brought the Golden State's drought-stricken and wildfire-ravaged hills a gloriously display of Springtime Wild Flowers. pic.twitter.com/cUY84GgfDy— Sue Hweamel #REALTOR 🏠🔑 (@suehweamel) March 15, 2019
Flowers bloom in the desert of Anza- Borego, southern California .( AP photos) pic.twitter.com/FAQigUYsYI— Nguyen My (@mynguyen288) March 10, 2019
Another Twitter handle by the name California Snowflake wrote: The California drought is officially OVER! CA is free of drought for the first time in more than 7 years and only a small amount of its territory remains dry as a very wet winter winds down, experts are reporting. The California bloom is real. Time to celebrate the new Spring! A native of California state, Kevin Waggoner also pointed out on Twitter: If I had one good thing to say about my state (California) it would have to be our rare superbloom.
He added: We have just been officially declared drought free and was blessed with a superbloom we only see once every decade in a matter of a few years of the last. Yet another Twitter handle, LUVKHMER wrote: Blooming season is arriving right in the yard of Angkorborie Temple in Central California. Very beautiful when ones observing closer to the flowers.
The California drought is officially OVER!— California Snowflake ❄️ (@LaurenUntil) March 15, 2019
CA is free of drought for the first time in more than 7 years and only a small amount of its territory remains dry as a very wet winter winds down, experts are reporting.
The California bloom is real. Time to celebrate the new Spring! pic.twitter.com/plhPTfXOpF