California Snowpack at Highest December Level in 4 Years Thanks to Recent Storms

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Satellite imagery shows snow blanketing the Sierra Nevada on Dec. 16, 2019. (Credit: Sentinel-3/European Space Agency)

Satellite imagery shows snow blanketing the Sierra Nevada on Dec. 16, 2019. (Credit: Sentinel-3/European Space Agency)

In a boost for California’s water supply, a series of recent storms that blanketed the Sierra Nevada in snow has built the state’s snowpack to its highest December level since 2015.

The snowpack — a key source of the state’s water supply — measured 113% of average this week, roughly 40% higher than the snowpack during the same time in 2018, according to the Department of Water Resources.

Data show the snowpack on Monday — the most recent date statistics were compiled — was also 182% higher than the same day in 2017, which was a banner year for precipitation that pulled large swaths of Northern California out of persistent drought conditions.

The southern and central sections of the Sierra snowpack were higher than average, at 131% and 116% of normal for the regions, respectively. The northern portion was 99% of normal for the day. If the snowpack melted at once, it would amount to roughly 8 inches of water for the state.

Read the full story on LATimes.com

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