As Californians across the state have been hoping for rain over the past several weeks due to the ongoing drought, several communities finally experienced some rainfall.
In Turlock, residents were surprised yet thrilled to hear the sound of rain tapping against their windows Wednesday night and early Thursday morning, as many have begun their own water conservation efforts due to the drought.
“I was happy that it rained because we need the water,” said Evin Nisan, a California State University, Stanislaus student. “I was starting to get worried with all the talk of the drought. Hopefully we can all pull together as a community to save water in this time of crisis and we can get through this together.”
According to Turlock Irrigation District’s Hydrology Department, the Tuolumne watershed has received a total of 1.1 inches of rain as of Thursday morning and are expecting to receive another 1.5 inches by Friday.
Although TID reports that Friday might bring another .10 inch of rain, the following five days are forecasted to be dry.
“We’re very happy to finally see rain here in the Turlock area and, more importantly, in the mountains above Don Pedro Reservoir,” said TID spokesperson Calvin Curtin. “But, as happy as this rainstorm makes us, it unfortunately doesn’t change the current situation we find ourselves in. This is going to be a difficult season for everyone and TID is working hard to help our growers through it.”
Regardless of the shortly lived wet weather, California continues to be in the one of the driest winters on record, leading to Gov. Jerry Brown’s State of Emergency Drought Declaration just weeks ago. In response to the extreme dry conditions that continue to plague the state, Gov. Brown has called on all Californians to reduce their individual water consumption by 20 percent.
The drought has caught national attention, with President Barack Obama promising to work alongside California lawmakers as they address the urgent water shortage.
“For our Valley, the most important words the President uttered tonight were not in his actual speech, but when he told me ‘we have a drought to work together on’ before he took the podium,” said Rep. Jim Costa (D-Fresno) following the President’s State of the Union address. “As we face this water crisis, California needs all the help we can get, and I hope he remains true to his promise to be a partner in our struggle.”
On Thursday, Gov. Brown met with several water officials in Los Angeles where he shared that he has met with President Obama to discuss receiving federal help.
“He pledged his support to help California,” said Brown. “We’re working in the short term to get funding from the President…At the end of the day, we need water. We’re going to have to get water and the first source is to not waste it.”
To monitor the California drought conditions, visit www.drought.gov