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antiquie

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Gender: Female
Hometown: Southern California
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Member since: Tue Jun 7, 2011, 03:02 PM
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Needed: 11 Trillion Gallons to Replenish California Drought

The finding was part of a sobering update on the state's drought made possible by space and airborne measurements and presented by NASA scientists Dec. 16 at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco. Such data are giving scientists an unprecedented ability to identify key features of droughts, data that can be used to inform water management decisions.

GRACE data reveal that, since 2011, the Sacramento and San Joaquin river basins decreased in volume by four trillion gallons of water each year (15 cubic kilometers). That's more water than California's 38 million residents use each year for domestic and municipal purposes. About two-thirds of the loss is due to depletion of groundwater beneath California's Central Valley.

In related results, early 2014 data from NASA's Airborne Snow Observatory indicate that snowpack in California's Sierra Nevada range was only half of previous estimates.

The scientists cautioned that while the recent California storms have been helpful in replenishing water resources, they aren't nearly enough to end the multi-year drought.

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