Thunderstorms help water almonds

Spring thundershowers wet the ground in Central California. Though the rain is welcome the water is sporadic and not enough to make up for four years of drought.

10 must-read western drought stories - May 20

In case you missed it, here are 10 stories related to the western drought written in the last week that you’ll want to read.

  1. Arizona, New Mexico in El Nino's wet path this year? University of Arizona Agricultural Meteorologist Paul Brown may not be betting the tables on drought-breaking rains for the West this year but the odds are starting to stack in favor of it.
  2. As California withers, federal water bill mired in secrecy: The “emergency” that has been termed of California’s drought seems to not have the same urgency within Congress as some think it should have. The secrecy over drought legislation currently in the works continues to bother some.
  3. Disappearing Lake Powell underlines drought crisis facing Colorado River: Though Lake Powell is America’s second-largest reservoir; low flows in the Colorado River basin have led to a significant decline in the lake’s capacity, which is now at about 45 percent capacity. The lake provides water to about 40 million people in seven states.
  4. Dirtier air? Blame the drought for that, too: The Arizona Republic says Phoenix’ poor air quality can be partially blamed on the drought.
  5. California water officials deliver sobering facts on depleted wells: Of the estimated 1,900 wells that are now dry in California, more than half of them are in Tulare County.
  6. For California salmon, summer of truck rides, bucket lifts: California Department of Fish and Wildlife spends untold amounts of money trucking salmon to the San Francisco Bay.
  7. Fresno Irrigation District farmers to get no water for first time in a century: Canal water that normally flows to growers in the Fresno, Calif. irrigation district will not get there this year.
  8. A better alternative to Delta tunnels: Is there a better way to move water through or around California’s Delta region than the Governor’s twin tunnel plan? A former Delta watermaster thinks so.
  9. L.A. getting no Owens Valley runoff for first time since 1913: California drought gets “real” for southern California as officials dam the Los Angeles Aqueduct because there’s not enough water to deliver south.
  10. As Delta Smelt nears extinction, new concerns emerge over dredging: As California officials claim the Delta Smelt is near extinction, new scrutiny is in place over dredging shipping channels in the San Francisco Bay.
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