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Monday, 14 June 2021

How does this year's drought compare to 2015?

Credit: 23ABC News | Bakersfield
Duration: 03:15s 0 shares 2 views
How does this year's drought compare to 2015?
How does this year's drought compare to 2015?

As drought conditions continue to worsen across Kern County, how close are we to seeing any government-implemented restrictions put in place?

TO WORSEN ACROSS KERN COUNTY,HOW CLOSE ARE WE TO SEEING ANYGOVERNMENT-IMPLEMENTEDRESTRICTIONS PUT IN PLACE?23ABC'S AUSTN WESTFALL JOINS USLIVE IN SOUTHWESTBAKERSFIELD WITH DETAILS ON HOWSEVERE THE PROBLEM NEEDSTO BE, TO GET US TO THAT POINT.AUSTIN?THOSE WHO LIVED IN CALIFORNIA IN2015 WILL REMEMBER WHENGOVERNOR JERRY BROWN IMPLEMENTEDTHE FIRST-EVERMANDATORY WATER RESTRICTIONSTHROUGHOUT THESTATE -- ASKING RESIDENTS TOLIMIT HOW THEY WATER THEIRLAWN AND WASH THEIR CAR, AMONGOTHER THINGS.

WEASKED THE NATIONAL WEATHERSERVICE IF THISYEAR'S DROUGHT IS REMINISCENT OFTHAT."WE'VE SEEN SNOWPACK AMOUNTSSIMILAR TO WHAT OCCURRED AROUNDTHAT TIME."IN APRIL, OFFICIALS CALCULATEDTHIS YEAR'S SIERRANEVADA SNOWPACK AS BEING ONLY 59PERCENT OFWHAT IT NORMALLY IS -- WHICH ISA STRONGINDICATOR OF A LOOMING DRYPERIOD.

BUT THE NATIONALWEATHER SERVICE OFFICE INHANFORD SAYS SNOWPACK ISN'TTHE ONLY WAY THAT DROUGHTS AREMEASURED.

"LOOKING FORWARD, IT'SLIKELY NOT GOING TO GET BETTERONLY BECAUSE WE'RE HEADING INTOTHE DRY SEASON."RAINFALL AWAY FROM THE SIERRAS-- IN AREAS LIKEBAKERSFIELD -- IS ALSO TAKENINTO ACCOUNT.

METEOROLOGISTBRIAN OAKS SAYS THIS YEAR HASBEEN DRIER IN THAT REGARDTOO.

HE SAYS AS WE MOVE CLOSERTO SUMMER, THINGS WILLLIKELY ONLY GET DRIER."YOU MENTION 2015, WE PROVIDED ACRITICAL SUPPLY TO OURPARTICIPANTS, AND WE'RE DOINGTHAT AGAIN THISYEAR."THE KERN WATER BANK STEPS UP TOHELP DURING DRY TIMES -- ANDTHIS YEAR IT'S HELPING IN A BIGWAY.

THE BANK SAYS AN AVERAGEFAMILY USES ABOUT 1 ACRE FOOT OFWATER PER YEAR.

THISYEAR, THE BANK WILL NEED TOSUPPLY 150,000 ACRE FEET TOFARMS AND URBAN AREAS TO COMBATDROUGHT CONDITIONS.THAT'S MORE THAN 48 BILLIONGALLONS OF WATER."WE WOULD MUCH RATHER BE IN ASITUATION WHERE WE'RERECHARGING WATER, FILLING THEAQUIFER BACK UP, THANPUMPING IT BACK OUT."THE WATER BANK SAYS CONSECUTIVEDRY YEARS CAN BEDETRIMENTAL TO LOCAL WATERSUPPLIES.

THE CALIFORNIADROUGHT MONITOR LABELS KERNCOUNTY IN ITS D-3CLASSIFICATION OF DROUGHT RIGHTNOW, MEANING"EXTREME DROUGHT." THE WEATHERSERVICE SAYS WE'RE NOT FAR OFFFROM BEING IN D-4, "EXCEPTIONALDROUGHT.""SO YOU HAVE SOME INDICATORS OFTHE D-4 CLASSIFICATIONALREADY."THAT D-4 CLASSIFICATION IS WHEREKERN WAS THE LAST TIMEWATER RESTRICTIONS WEREIMPLEMENTED.ULTIMATELY THE NATIONAL WEATHERSERVICE IS NOTTHE ONE WHO MAKES THE CALL TOIMPLEMENT WATER RESTRICTIONS.THAT WOULD BE GOVERNOR GAVINNEWSOM.

WE REACHED OUT TO HISOFFICE BUT HAVEN'T HEARD BACKYET.

ALEX.AUSTIN IS THERE AN UPDATE AS TOWHETHER THE GOVERNOR PLANSTO DECLARE A REGIONAL DROUGHTEMERGENCY,WHICH OFFICIALS HAVE SAID WOULDHELP FARMERS DURING THEDROUGHT?LAST WEEK WE SAW A GROUP OFELECTED OFFICIALSACROSS THE CENTRAL VALLEY CALLFOR NEWSOM TODECLARE THAT EMERGENCY, BUT ITAPPEARS HE HASN'T YET.

HEONLY HAS IN TWO NORTHERNCALIFORNIA COUNTIES SOFAR.IN BAKERSFIELD AUSTINWESTFALL 23ABCCONNECTING YOU.CORONAVIRUS DEATHS AND CASESDROPPED

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