What “Permanent Drought”? California Governor officially declares end to drought emergency

From the “but the media told us the drought was permanent in California” fake news department.

Wired, May 2016: “Thanks El Niño, But California’s Drought Is Probably Forever“. “California is still in a state of drought. For now, maybe forever.” The article gives no support — none — for this clickbait claim. In January Wired attempted to weasel away from their claims by defining drought to mean needing more water than nature provides (“A Wet Year Won’t Beat California’s Never-Ending Drought“). Orwell nodded, unsurprised.

The NYT did no better in “California Braces for Unending Drought“, May 2016. The closest the article comes to supporting their headline is an odd statement by Governor Brown:  “But now we know that drought is becoming a regular occurrence…”  Drought has always been a regular occurrence in California. The governor also said that “California droughts are expected to be more frequent and persistent, as warmer winter temperatures driven by climate change reduce water held in the Sierra Nevada snowpack and result in drier soil conditions.” That is probable. But it is quite mad for the NYT to call more frequent droughts “an unending drought.”

By Bark Gomez and Yasemin Saplakoglu, Bay Area News Group

Sacramento >> On the heels of what is becoming one of the wettest rainfall seasons ever recorded in California, Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday rescinded the drought emergency order he signed in 2014 while signaling new legislative efforts to maintain water conservation measures.

“This drought emergency is over, but the next drought could be around the corner,” Brown said in a statement. “Conservation must remain a way of life.”

Brown is making permanent the bans on wasteful water practices, like hosing off sidewalks, and requiring water agencies to continue to report their water use every month to the state.

At the same time, state agencies Friday announced a long-term plan to better prepare California for future droughts with continued water conservation efforts. The framework requires new legislation to establish long-term water conservation measures and improved planning for more frequent and severe droughts.

“This framework is about converting Californians’ response to the drought into an abiding ethic,” California Department of Water Resources acting Director Bill Croyle said in a statement. “Technically, the drought is over, but this framework extends and expands our dry-year habits. Careful, sparing use of water from backyards to businesses and farm fields will help us endure the next inevitable drought.”

Brown’s executive order lifts the drought emergency in all California counties except Fresno, Kings, Tulare and Tuolumne, where emergency drinking water projects will continue to help address diminished groundwater supplies, according to the governor’s release.

More: http://www.chicoer.com/general-news/20170407/governor-declares-end-to-drought-emergency

131 thoughts on “What “Permanent Drought”? California Governor officially declares end to drought emergency

  1. AGW has been causing extreme droughts and extreme floods since 1850 BC
    OOPs – I meant 1850AD

    • Joe the predictions of Peak Rain & Snow like Peak Oil and Anti-Peak Hurricane is all about Hubris nothing about reality

      • Predictions always seem to follow a straight line….
        …on other words, they can’t predict squat

      • Peak oil based on a normal distribution documents accurately have a wide range of biological systems operate. For example, in an interview years ago the manager documented how he grew his company by plotting the life cycle time scale of each product based on a normal distribution, and overlapped the introduction of new products at the decline stage of the previous one. The sum total was to create a modestly and continuously growing company. A dozen peak cycles were in his time chart. It was a very methodical way to grow a company.

      • Drought will become a rare and exciting event.

        Leetle cheeldren will never know a world without water.

        The inhumanity of it all……..

      • Peak Oil is very real, just as Peak Coal is very real. The Earth is finite, therefore ALL it’s resources are finite as well. But that doesn’t mean that we are anywhere near the limit of those resources.

        The people who predict Peak Oil will happen in the next 10 years are very ignorant, just as the people who predicted Peak Coal would happen in 10 years back in the 1800’s were very ignorant.

        We will probably stop drilling for oil in the next 50 years. It won’t be because it peaked. It will be because we will have developed better and cheaper means of producing energy, especially for transportation.

      • schitzree,
        Speaking of ignorance, the original Peak Oil predictions were based on conventional, pooled oil, which was the only economical source at the time the predictions were first made. It never predicted that we would run out of oil, only that it eventually would become so expensive that alternatives would have to be found. Since then, breakthroughs in technology such as horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have provided an alternative to oil found in traps. The technological advance is the equivalent of a new energy source. However, fundamentally, the ‘fracked’ oil and gas will probably follow a similar but steeper curve of production, and probably a steeper decline. It was never about running out of oil, but a caution that exploration was not finding new sources quickly enough to forestall depletion. That problem was sidestepped by an alternative technology that doesn’t rely on finding a small target to drill, but rather drilling large areas. However, it is still a cautionary story about finite resources.

      • What’s happened ????
        I bought a gallon of gas at Scott Gas in Wilmington Delaware in 1962 for $0.9 yep nine cents!
        (peak oil ? )

        • I remember the “gas wars” days. That’s when I bought my first car ($45!). $.10/gallon was the going rate in California.

      • Hey George, apparently they delivered the gas that was supposed to go to Indiana to you guys instead. Around here it jumped from 2.11 to 2.49 in the past week.

        I hear it’s around $4 a gallon in parts of Cali. I know they have higher gas taxes there but surely not dollars more.

        Supply and demand must be fun when you can control the supply and the demand can’t drop much without crashing the economy. Like a license to print money.

      • The fact that new technology and new discoveries keep moving peak oil, is all the evidence that’s needed to conclude the concept of peak oil is fatally flawed.

  2. Of course, all the money spent on climate modeling assures us of accurate long term forecasts. And a bioengineering project assures us of flying pigs. (Do I need a sarc?)

      • Cincy was, at one time, so called. I do know why, but that is not the topic here.
        Before it was call that, it was called the Queen City of the West.

      • The governor also said that “California droughts are expected to be more frequent and persistent, as warmer winter temperatures driven by climate change reduce water held in the Sierra Nevada snowpack and result in drier soil conditions.” That is probable. But it is quite mad for the NYT…
        Probable? I see exactly ZERO evidence of this probability.
        Nor do I find evidence of flying pigs.
        And Washington DC is not Porkolopis, but Morodor on the Potomac.

      • John F. Hultquist April 8, 2017 at 3:25 pm
        Cincy was, at one time, so called. I do know why, but that is not the topic here.
        Before it was call that, it was called the Queen City of the West.

        Born and raised about 4 miles south of Fountain Square.
        Funny. As I was growing up, Dad would offer us goetta for breakfast. I think he was a bit amused at our reactions and refusals. (Maybe that’s why he kept offering it?)
        I kinda’ like it now but it’s hard to find where I live now.

        PS No part of it could fly. it couldn’t even flutter. 😎

    • Good ol’ FlimFlam. Just like Nye, why do people continue to listen to him.

      A lot of people started to add water tanks to their backyards to offset water restrictions, then local councils wanted to profit from that and charge them accordingly. Look out California – here it comes.

      • Really?council charges? where?

        We bought a water tank for gardening when we lived in the city and got a 10% grant from the State govt and not a peep from council + or -. Now we live in the bush and no tanks no water.

  3. Not to forget that CA uses 4.4 million acre feet from the Colorado, and the Colorado Basin is “very damp” right now.

    • “California” doesn’t use it. Those clowns who are friends of Jerry south of the Tehachapis use it. They also slurp down a huge amount of perfectly good wild salmon medium exported from north of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Of course quite a bit of that goes to growing cotton in the southern valley desert, grapes in aridosols, orchards in grasslands and similar wastes.

  4. They created an entire drought monitoring and restrictions bureaucracy with lots of positions and tax money.

    “Let’s reduce the size of government.”
    – said by no Democrat, ever.

  5. Conservation is, and always has been a good idea, especially in drought-prone areas. Nothing to do with so-called “climate change”, much as the Climate Liars would like it to be.

    • That conservation needs to be combined with water storage. Otherwise increased conservation just means more water being flushed into the ocean.

  6. Governor Moon Beam would be the best Clown for the March For Hypocrisy in DC instead of Bill Nye the Gay Guy.

    Ha ha

      • Yes, and the Republicans do the same except they use drugs, terrorism, crime, immigration, etc. to create their fear. Both major parties suck.

  7. Notice how the plans to help with the next inevitable drought are to use less water instead of providing more storage? How is California going to provide water for all those illegal immigrants it encourages to enter the state/country? The reservoirs may be full but it takes more time for the ground water basins to replenish. Nature once again saves poor planning just like it will save California from ‘Climate Change’.

    • Nature once again saves poor planning just like it will save California from ‘Climate Change’.

      So…Nature is the CAGW’s meme editors’ worst enemy?

    • If the excess water was sent through hundreds of miles of open base aqueducts instead of flushed the water table could more quickly recover.

  8. Pity that no new reservoirs have been built to store some of this abundance of rain water for when the next drought comes “around the corner.” The last reservoir completed in CA with > 100,000KCM capacity was 1968 (Lake Success). The last with >1,000,000KCM capacity was 1970 (New Bullards Bar).

    But high-speed rail is coming soon!

    • High speed rail? Maybe they can bring water quickly from the Great Lakes or Hudson’s Bay.

      • The municipal/state/federal planning horizon seems to be about the same as “…my grandpa said…”. In other words if it ain’t gonna happen tomorrow we don’t worry.

  9. Just imagine how bad the control freakery would be if weren’t impossible for humans to conspire . .

  10. Reservoirs are full and snowpack just got another big boost this weekend. Too bad they had to dump so much water out of Oroville, so much that it could have provided basically all of LA’s water for most of a year.

  11. This is truly horrible situation. This can’t stand. This is a time for problems, not lack of them. We have to come up with something really bad, right away!

    Carbon dioxide must be much more dangerous than previously thought. An excess of rain is virtually killing all the wildlife in California, washing them out to sea. The cloud covered skies of California and Donald Drumpf are making me depressed.

    Oh Gaia, what have we done to anger you?

  12. Just because the drought is over, that doesn’t mean the water control overseers will give up any of their power to decide who gets water and who doesn’t.

    Really, are you even surprised? ○¿○

    • Smelt first.
      Dogs and cats next.
      Then the inedible fruits of Ma’ Gaia.
      Last, but certainly least, people.

      • Smelt, you mean that brackish fish driven to near extinction by California importing game fish, then more aggessive Asian Smelt??

        Yes, you mean that Smelt, the one Universities have received 400 million to study.

  13. To better prepare for future droughts, California needs to limit growth and build more reservoirs.

    Another option would be to build nuclear plants to power desalinization plants.

    • Desal has far greater issues than just power.

      Capturing freshwater runoff before it hits the Pacific via things like the LA “River” would make much more sense than treating the saltwater it mixes with.

  14. Most reservoirs do not have much more capacity than to hold average levels. So there is no buffer to hold more water in wet years. That means much water is let go to avoid, as best possible, overflow conditions. This is the problem. A self made crisis.

  15. With the continuing climate change causing droughts to become more frequent, the Governor will find there is a new major drought every 4 or 5 months!

  16. Global warming ends “Permanent Drought!”

    My god, is there anything Global Warming can’t do?

  17. Link: Soil compaction

    What is a long term issue is the subsidence. Soil compaction results in a reduction of the pore sizes between particles, resulting in essentially a permanent condition.
    Unlike a fattened-dried sponge, the deep layers cannot be rehydrated by excess water flowing over the surface. When the next drought arrives, pumping will be less effective.

  18. Silly me. And here I thought movie studios chose Hollywood because of how many sunny days California has. I now see that before humans started spewing so much of Satan’s gas California was a veritable rain forest. And I now see that the Anasazi Indians who lived nearby left because they were scared of the evil white man and not because of a severe long-term drought in that part of the world. [end sarcasm]

  19. Gov. Brown overheard a legislator say “make it rain” when talking about some new Kalifornia tax, and he got confused.

  20. So after 4 years of ineffective leadership dealing with severe drought Jerry Brown declares a “permanent drought” in California. That’s a nice way to cover you’re mistakes. Of course, 9 months later the drought is over and the reservoirs are close to being back to normal. Maybe Jerry Brown should have declared the permanent drought sooner?

  21. I wonder if any consideration has been given to pumping some of the excess runoff into the aquifers since California isn’t into building dams.

    • I wonder if any consideration has been given to pumping some of the excess runoff into the aquifers since California isn’t into building dams.

      Yes, where’s the connection valves into the aquifers.

  22. Whether it’s permanent drought or permanent deluge, it’s unprecedented, worse than we thought and all our fault!

    Repent, sinners!

  23. “At the same time, state agencies Friday announced a long-term plan to better prepare California for future droughts with continued water conservation efforts. The framework requires new legislation to establish long-term water conservation measures and improved planning for more frequent and severe droughts.”
    As I read this it occurred to me that a self fulfilling non-prophecy may be occurring here; drought is usually felt as not enough water to use as needed. Therefore better planning for the use of ALL water resources will mean more WILL be available whenever needed in the future. Therefore, if a good job of planning is done there will be less drought. Good job Moonbeam! [But I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for a good job to be done by ANY bureaucracy!]

  24. Hmm, droughts come and go in cycles. Why is it so far-fetched then to think that other changes in climate might also come and go in cycles and are not all caused by CO2?

  25. In Australia, as NSW and Queensland once more suffer from damaging floods, here’s a timely reminder of some predictions by false prophets of the CAGW cult, backed up by such luminaries as Professor David Karoly and various CSIRO identities.

    ‘It pays to check out Tim Flannery’s predictions about climate change.’
    Andrew Bolt Herald Sun February 12, 2011:12:00AM


    If just a fraction of the money spent on allegedly “stopping climate change” had been spent on the mitigation or prevention of flooding in urban areas, we would not be facing such a physically, mentally and financially disastrous aftermath.

  26. Big water bureaucracy needs money to keep going, to pay the public servants to watch your consumption … and then your consumption is “permanently” halved and the revenues drop accordingly so your consumption priced rates increase. Happened here in Oz and so will it happen in Kalifornya … together with your up coming new fuel taxes!

    • Speaking of big bureaucracy and running out of resources, consider the bankruptcies of Stockton, Vallejo, and San Bernardino California canaries in the much larger mine of politically over-promised burgeoning state government employee retirement funding that following generations will face along with the stupefying federal equivalent in unfunded liabilities that easily pales our $20 trillion accumulated “national debt” that doubled in the last 8 years.
      Even Barack Obama Sr., the former POTUS’ absentee father and frustrated Kenyan economist, had to acknowledge that a 100% tax rate posed some kind of a limitation on what a socialist regime could reap from its serfdom. And for a further herald of what’s yet to come, check out how soon ObamaCare was so economically insupportable that years ago Fanny Mae and Freddy Mac investor funds were raided to keep that fanciful ball in the air (in the earlier pattern of diverted social security trust fund assets to the federal general fund for more immediate voter-pleasing uses) even with the soaring insurance premiums and whopping deductables upon deployment both taking a true hockey stick graphic form.
      We’ve been so content to live beyond our means in so many deferred payment ways that Popeye’s cartoon pal Wimpy (“I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today!”) is the poster child for our own impatient desire for comfortable shiny new stuff.
      On the other hand, California’s undocumented immigration burden will have its built-in solution when its legislature makes central valley agriculture prohibitive enough that as some wag once put it, busloads of farm owners are spotted slipping over the border into Mexico.

    • It’s just nonsense Eve. There’s no evidence at all increasing CO2 has caused increased CAT over the past 40 years. My association with NASA and NOAA involved the study of clear air turbulence and it dates to 1978. We have the records. These folks are making stuff up out of whole cloth and calling it a simulation. It’s disgusting.

      They have real data. They use simulations instead. It’s purely appalling.

  27. “Conservation must remain a way of life.”

    Well, YES, considering that California has almost doubled the number of residents since 1979, and has added NOT ONE DROP of new reservoir space since then. I wonder whose fault THAT is?

    • No one knows how many illegal aliens live in CA, so its population is probably well over 40 million. Maybe 50 million.

      When I was at Stanford, 1969-73, CA surpassed NY as the most populous state, with almost 20 million in the 1970 census. So, it has well more than doubled since then. And I felt it had too many people in 1969.

      CA had 5.7 million in 1930, 6.9 million in 1940, 10.6 million in 1950 and 15.7 million 1960, again probably all too low. So it almost doubled in 1930-50, again in 1950-70, then again in 1970-2017. Both immigration and the postwar baby boom accounted for the first doubling, but in the ’70s the CA dream withered and citizens left the state in droves for other Western states, where they recreated the same Big Government, countercultural nightmares that caused them to flee. The mad fools!

      Of CA’s 40 million people, at least ten million are legal immigrants. There is a similar number of illegals.

      • ” Of CA’s 40 million people, at least ten million are legal immigrants. There is a similar number of illegals.” Which would mean 50% of people in California can’t vote legally (assuming ‘legal immigrants’ aren’t citizens yet) and 25% don’t pay income tax. I don’t think the numbers are that skewed but I bet it’s significant.

    • “I wonder whose fault THAT is?”

      Defenders of the smelt.

      California has built far to many residential homes in the past 50 years. It’s not that more water is available, it isn’t. It’s not that people haven’t protested the diversion of water for residential use, they have.

      No one listens, people are allowed to build more homes and CA is in a continuous state of drought. It isn’t magic.

      IF CA doesn’t immediately stop issuing permits for new construction of residential real estate, every property owner in the state will face bankruptcy. No choice. It absolute must happen.

  28. In my experience it is a common ploy used by the left and others caught out in the open committing factual errors to try to redefine a key term or two to twist the argument. They have no embarrassment about lying or distorting the truth, but they are afraid of being found to be in error – almost hysterically so. This is because their objective is not related to the Truth so much as protecting their own precarious egos.

  29. John Steinbeck, East of Eden: “And it never failed that during the dry years the people forgot about the rich years, and during the wet years they lost all memory of the dry years. It was always that way. “

  30. My family moved to central CA in 1964.

    Since then, the formula has been to develop and sell residential real estate absent any infrastructure planning. Developers aren’t required to establish water supplies, power or even roads beyond the subdivisions.

    The result has been private profit and public expense; water is paid for by taxes along with roads and to a very large extent power. The same infrastructure is sold over and over to an increasing number of property owners, who also happen to pay property taxes.

    Moonbeam and every other Governor of California, along with every state legislature elected since 1964, have failed to invest in the infrastructure necessary to support the population and new development in the state. This isn’t a mystery.

    The people of California are simply being screwed blue and tattooed by their elected representative and private real estate developers. Brown is an environmental rapist, so was his dad. He’s rich, he has a private well, and he just doesn’t care as long as he receives a nonstop supply of leftover starlets and wanabe rock legends from Hollywood.

    It’s going to collapse. No stopping it. I plan to be dead before it happens.

    • I’m a Cali native and I get what your saying. But the dems/enviros have led us down this path. With the collapse of the inner cities and ensuing white flight they had no choice but to build out. But the dems have refused to build the infrastructure needed to carry the load. Caltrans and their HOV lanes, metered on ramps, no lane widening until all the surrounding areas are built out making it way harder to expand. Overhead rail should’ve been done decades ago but the enviro nimbys stopped that in its tracks so all we get for billions is slow rail and endless train crossings backing up traffic. Which I think is their goal. There is a huge push to go high density along transit corridors. They want to make it so crowded and time consuming that we’ll give up our cars/freedom. The problem is their public transit options are even slower. Like you I’ll be long gone when the fecal matter hits the oscillation device.

  31. I’ve been skiing all over the Sierras, in fact at least once a month for more than 13 years, and I can say with absolute certainty that this will be a good summer back-country ski season. But more to the point, their is no such thing as an average season here,here except by coincidence. The local climate bounces between extremes and the ‘authoritative’ models are clueless.

    • Exactly! All one has to do is drive the 395 and look at the landscape. Lush forests followed by almost lunar landscape void of vegetation.

      • Gonzo,
        Yes. I’ve been driving 395 to Mammoth regularly. What has struck me is that once you get to 108, it was white on both sides of the desert road.

  32. I can’t believe Moonbeam didn’t claim his green energy plans and cap and trade program made the difference.

  33. There is no such thing as “permanent drought”. California is not in desert. Droughts and floods follow a rhythmic pattern. First the officials must educate the rulers on this issue and make appropriate long term plans by using the projected needs for future with the increased population density and other needs. Because of the climatologists presented drought indices for different regions.

    Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

  34. “Conservation must remain a way of life.”

    Danger – Liberal progressive extract 100%
    Hazardous to human health and the biosphere
    H228: Flammable solid
    H280: Contains gas under pressure; may explode if heated
    H300: Fatal if swallowed

  35. “as warmer winter temperatures driven by climate change…”. I thought CO2 caused warmer winter temperatures which caused the climate to change. Now CO2 causes climate change directly and this causes temperatures to rise?

  36. I’d have said the end of a drought would be the return to the ‘normal’ (statistically average) rainfall pattern.

    10 years of dry punctuated by an extreme weather event doesn’t seem to fit that.

    Is California going to return to its rainfall pattern of the last half of the 20th century?

  37. Civilized people have known for a long time the importance of saving the surplus from the good years to provide for the lean years. Are there no civilized people in California?

  38. A couple of notes about major reservoirs shown:
    – Perris is being kept at low levels until earthquake mitigation work is completed.
    – Folsom is being kept at low levels until the new spillway is completed this year.
    – Obviously, Oroville is being kept at low levels to repair damage caused by overflowing the emergency spillway earlier this year.
    – I don’t know what is going on at Millerton, but you can clearly see that they have been dumping water at high rates.
    So, if not for dumping water, all the major reservoirs shown would be above historical averages, and many at historical highs. Some using spillways in anticipation of new major in-flows as the unusually high snow packs begin to melt this summer.

  39. What does it take to become a Climate scientist? It’s great, if it rains they’re right if it dosen’t they’re right. Let’s face it you CAN NEVER BE WRONG.

  40. Since Moonbeam is opposed to all forms of water storage, why does it matter if wasteful practices resume once the drought is over? Any water saved from such restrictions will just be flushed out to sea and lost anyway.

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