Last year, California had huge storms before the first snow survey. Water content was 150 percent of normal. This year it’s expected to be a dismal 20 percent.
Snowpack normally provides a third of the water used in California as it melts into streams and reservoirs. But 2013 was the driest year on record.
Newly appointed Drought Manager Bill Croyle with DWR says a number of factors will determine if the state officially declares a drought.
“Health and safety issues, our fire threat, impact on agriculture, the state’s economy, the resiliency of our system to be able to hold and manage our water and transmit water to where it’s needed,” Croyle says.