California’s water outlook is brighter, but…

Though it’s still early, this year’s storms have brought increased precipitation, including heavy snowfall in the Sierras.  Our real problem isn’t lack of rain, it’s a lack of water storage capacity. Despite voter approval of the $7.1 billion water bond in 2014, including $2.7 billion earmarked for new dams and reservoirs, few projects are currently under way. This week I toured the $4.4 billion Sites Reservoir project north of Sacramento, which is an exception. The Sites project has been studied for decades and engineering studies are underway. Once completed, total water storage capacity in Northern California will increase by 23%, though the Southern California impact will be slight.

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