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Water Conditions

Fact sheet: Water Conditions Update, June 2016 (PDF) New

Current Water Conditions

Historical El Niño Precipitation Information

Comparison of Daily Water Year 2016 Precipitation to Daily Precipitation During Other Strong El Niño Years

To illustrate the wide range of conditions that have been experienced during historical strong El Niño years, the plots below compare present daily precipitation with that observed during six other strong El Niño years. Each plot also shows wettest and driest years for the index during its period of record, as well as a long-term average value.

Northern Sierra precipitation (8-station Index in Sacramento Basin)

Central Sierra precipitation (5-station Index in San Joaquin Basin)

Southern Sierra precipitation (6-station Index in Tulare Basin)

Historical Timing of Precipitation During Strong El Niño Years

Shown below are national-scale composites of monthly precipitation during historical strong El Niño winter seasons, expressed as anomalies from long-term averages. Strong El Niño conditions may provide some guidance for preparing seasonal precipitation outlooks in parts of the U.S. at certain times of the year, but El Niño is not the only factor influencing the climate system. Each winter season is unique, and past performance should not be taken as a guarantee of future outcomes.

Map comparisons of past El Nino precipitation
Figure courtesy of National Weather Service's San Diego Weather Forecast Office. Download a PDF version of the graphic.

Groundwater Conditions

Click on the images below to see how statewide groundwater levels have changed over the duration of this drought, shown using fall groundwater data. Information about how groundwater data are collected and data for individual wells are available here:

Groundwater Level Change: Fall 2011 to Fall 2015

One Year Change:
Fall 2014 to Fall 2015
Two Year Change:
Fall 2013 to Fall 2015
Groundwater level changes- fall 2014-2015
Groundwater level changes- fall 2013-2015
Four Year Change:
Fall 2011 to Fall 2015
(More Than 50 Feet)
Four Year Change:
Fall 2011 to Fall 2015
(More Than 100 Feet)
Groundwater level changes- fall 2011-2015 Groundwater level changes- fall 2011-2015