California drought monitor: February 21, 2017 (The National Drought Mitigation Center)
California drought monitor: February 23, 2016 (The National Drought Mitigation Center)
California since January, has received rainfall almost daily. Since Oct. 1, California has received 30 atmospheric storms, while the average atmospheric storms California receives is 10 to 15. It is these storms and the rainfall that has led to the damage of Oroville Dam, flooding of San Jose, levees to break, and dams/reservoirs needing to release large amounts of water. These atmospheric storms are coming from Hawaii and the high-pressure winds that were blocking the storm had been broken up, allowing the storm to be in full effect. UCLA atmospheric researcher, Daniel Swain, says California's atmospheric storms are based on the amount of atmospheric rivers, and currently there are too many, causing too much rain. Swain also says the water temperature of the Pacific Ocean may have played a part in the storms. Climate change can also be a cause to the storms, as warmer ocean temperature allows for greater evaporation, which then allows moisture for atmospheric storms. This article is important as it looks into the storm and drought conditions of California. The article also places expectations for the future, being that as global warming worsens more droughts & atmospheric storms such as the ones right now, are bound to occur.