LATHROP – Residents in Lathrop used almost 30 percent less water in October of this year than they did in the same year in 2013, continuing the trend of conservation in the wake of California’s extensive drought.
According to numbers that were submitted to the State Water Resources Control Board, Lathrop residents used 105.6 million gallons of water in October as compared to 135.5 million gallons during October of 2013 – a 27 percent reduction. The State of California, which has mandated water conservation across the state to deal with the worst drought that the state has seen in decades, uses numbers from the 2013 as a baseline to compare all current reduction against.
And while October is typically a month of cooling temperatures in the Central Valley – with the warm Indian Summer of late September fading away after the first week of the month – October was unusually warm this year save for a storm that rolled through and dumped as much as two inches of rain in some parts of the Northern San Joaquin Valley.
While last year’s El Nino rains helped put California in a better position in terms of its water available – which provides drinking water to the states burgeoning population as well as irrigation water for farmers that feed upwards of half of the country – it didn’t do anything to change the drought status in some parts of the state.
While the Northern reaches of California – which typically get more rainfall from the southern tip of Pacific Northwest storms – has seen the drought conditions almost disappear, pockets of Central and Southern California remained unchanged. Reservoirs in the Sierra Nevada Mountains remain at levels far below historical capacities at this point while California’s two largest reservoirs – Shasta Lake and Lake Oroville, which are federally managed and provide water that is transported through the California aqueduct – are nearly full.
But with a La Nina weather system expected to roll across the state this winter, forecasters are hoping for equal to or better than rainfall and snow totals from last year to replenish reservoirs and preserve drinking water supplies that have been threatened by drought in some areas.
In October Lathrop issued one warning to a water waster who wasn’t following the restrictions that were mandated by the state and approved by the council. Residents can only water outdoors two days a week.
To contact reporter Jason Campbell email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 209.249.3544.