California Weather Crisis

California is experiencing a weather crisis, and scientists don’t see it getting better any time soon.


Noah Berger

The amount of rainfall has already caused significant flooding, and scientists predict it will only escalate.

Lily Wilkin, Co-Copy Editor

Over the past month California, specifically, the areas of,  Central Valley, Salinas Valley, and Santa Cruz, have seen an onslaught of snow and precipitation causing distress for many residents. 

California has gotten around 45 feet of snow, an amount the state has never seen before. According to The Washington Post, “The Sierra Nevada now has a snowpack that is 186 to 269 percent of normal.”   

Alongside the unimaginable amount of snow, the state has also seen a dramatic increase in moisture, stemming from 9 different “atmospheric rivers” pouring rain onto the state. 

According to the National Environmental Satellite Data and Information System, an atmospheric river is a region of the atmosphere that flows through the sky and carries excess water vapor that is then deposited across the land. 

Atmospheric rivers are the root cause of the increase in precipitation in California.
(National Environmental Satellite Data and Information System)

As a result of these atmospheric rivers, there have been 21 confirmed deaths, over 1,400 rescues, 400 mudslides, and more than 700 landslides. There have also been numerous power outages and damage to homes. All of these have occurred in the Central Valley, Salinas Valley, and Santa Cruz mountains areas. 

The state continues to be under a storm warning, with flooding being the main fear due to the excess precipitation. 

Another worry is more expected storms that will come with the warmer months ahead. With more rainfall and warmer temperatures, meteorologists and scientists fear what the snow melt will do as the large amount on its own would cause significant flooding and damage.