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Response to antiquie (Reply #9)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 10:08 PM

12. State's estimated rainfall in last 10 days: 10 trillion gallons

State's estimated rainfall in last 10 days: 10 trillion gallons

Matt Hamilton, Matt Stevens
14 December 2014

How much rainfall has hit California in the last 10 days?

It's hard to calculate. But one weather expert, Ryan Maue, offers this estimate: 10 trillion gallons.

That's enough to fill 15.1 million Olympic-size swimming pools or power Niagara Falls for 154 days.

Using data from the National Weather Service, Maue a Florida-based meteorologist for WeatherBell Analytics calculated that an average of 3.5 inches of water fell across the Golden State.

In places such as the Sierra Nevada, where several inches of snow fell, Maue's model liquefied the powder: 1 inch of water for every 10 inches of snow.

Since 1 inch of rain in a square mile works out to 17,378,742 gallons, and California has 163,696 square miles voila, 10 trillion.

So how accurate is this estimate?

"It's an accurate number, but it's based on how good the precipitation data is," Maue cautioned. "There's no way to know exactly."

Craig Shoemaker, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service's Sacramento station, agreed that it's a "kind of a neat number" but, alas, imperfect.



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