California is facing the prospect of a very dry winter, a year after one of the wettest winters on record, renewing fears of a devastating drought that gripped the state from 2011 to 2016.
By April, the northern Sierra Nevada range had set an all-time record for precipitation in a single season, with many ski resorts receiving enough snow to last through part of the summer. But since then, the state has been dry, and hot.
The Los Angeles Times notes: “This October and November were the hottest in 122 years of record keeping for the region.” A high-pressure ridge has remained in place over the entire West Coast, preventing “atmospheric rivers” that form in the warm, moist regions of the Pacific Ocean from carrying their precious payload northeast.
The season opened with a few storms in Northern California, but has been largely dry ever since. The Times reports: “The weather station in California with the longest record of recording rainfall, San Francisco, has measured just 3.4 inches of rain since the start of July. That’s only 44% of average for this time of year, said meteorologist Jan Null.”
“We’d have to have a dramatic turnaround to have a wet winter,” climatologist Bill Patzert of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge told the Times.
Breitbart News’ Chriss Street noted more than two months ago that the National Weather Service had warned a dry La Niña effect was likely in the winter of 2017-18:
The National Weather Service predicts a 55 to 65 percent chance of a La Niña this winter as cooling over the tropical Pacific and colder deep ocean waters is expected to cause a drier and warmer West Coast and a wetter and colder Mid-West and East Coast.
Warm temperatures and dry conditions have contributed to the recent spate of wildfires across the state.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.