Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Future of California Water Looks Bleak

As you have probably heard, the snowpack in the Sierra Nevada mountains this winter is running at merely 19% of the long-term average. Not good for a state that gets 30% of its water from snow runoff and is already in a prolonged drought. But stay tuned. This is just the beginning.

The future of the snowpack in the western U.S. was examined in the paper Extent of the rain-snow transition zone in thewestern U.S.under historic and projected climate, by P. Zion Klos, Timothy E. Link and John T. Abatzoglou, DOI: 10.1002/2014GL060500, Geophysical Research Letters, Volume 41, Issue 13, pages 4560–4568, 16 July 2014.  Their conclusion?
At broad scales, these projections indicate an average 30% decrease in areal extent of winter wet-day temperatures conducive to snowfall over the western United States. 
A 30% decrease? That leaves 70% of 19%, which comes out to be 13.3%! Yikes! That would translate into a loss of over 15% of their water from that one source alone. And, don't forget the other ramifications, such as the hit to the winter recreation industry. How many jobs does California have in that one industry? I couldn't find that specific number, but I found the numbers for the entire outdoor recreation industry for the whole country:

- 6.1 million American jobs
- $646 billion in outdoor recreation spending
each year
- $39.9 billion in federal tax revenue
- $39.7 billion in state/local tax revenue

The winter recreation industry for California will be only a part of that, but even a small part would be a lot of jobs and money.

And, let's not mention the hit the environment and ecology will take.

Sure, there will be years that see big snowfalls. But, the overall average does not look good.


  1. So, the basis for your ‘ah-hah!’ moment that you claim invalidates all climate science is an obscure paper in a 64-year old document. Just looking at the first page, I get these quotes,

    “The oldest known rocks have been dated by the uranium-lead ratio as having been formed about 1600 million years ago,”

    So, we’re to believe Earth is only 1.6 billion years old because this all-important document says so? And,

    “the absence of mountain ranges prevented the formation of glaciers.”

    Again, we’re supposed to believe there were no mountain ranges in the geologic past?

    The basis for your claim is that the greenhouse effect is not valid because water vapor absorbs more heat than CO2 does. In other words, you think the greenhouse effect is not valid because atmospheric gases absorb IR. That is the very definition of the greenhouse effect. You cannot say the greenhouse effect is invalid because it is valid.

    Does water vapor absorb more heat than CO2? Yes. In fact, about 70% of all heat absorbed by the atmosphere is absorbed by water vapor. But, the level of water vapor in the atmosphere is very dependent on the temperature. You can have the same amount of CO2 at any temperature, but not so with water vapor. As the temperature changes, the level will change dramatically. There must be heat in the air before you can have water vapor. In other words, something else must make air hot enough to allow the water vapor to be present.

    This claim of yours is a perfect example of both cherry-picking and rejecting science.

  2. I have a standing offer to anyone who wishes to claim I failed to prove an submission wrong. You, like others, make a broad statement that I have failed, but you cannot say how I failed. The basis if your claim is merely that you don't like the fact the submission wasn't valid, therefore, I must be wrong. Produce some science and point out exactly how I'm wrong. To no surprise, no one claiming I was wrong has been able to do anything close to that. Certainly your 1951 paper does not come anywhere within the realm of coming close.