California Drought: Time to Panic?

Submitted by paramount on June 28, 2015 - 12:34pm
I'm already making plans to leave California
5% (2 votes)
The El Nino will soon kick in - I'm not worried
34% (13 votes)
I'm staying and waiting for the modern water infrastructure grid to be built
21% (8 votes)
Leave now while you still can...the water issue won't be solved in our lifetime
3% (1 vote)
I'm not leaving even if the tap runs dry
13% (5 votes)
The real estate market is going to crash due to lack of water: I'm outta here!
3% (1 vote)
I want to leave but for whatever reason can't
3% (1 vote)
The drought is being oversold - we have plenty of water right now
18% (7 votes)
Total votes: 38
Submitted by The-Shoveler on June 29, 2015 - 8:40am.

After the initial cost of the Tank, pumps etc..

From what i understand, its about the same cost to have your water trucked in from out of state as it is to buy from the utility.

Submitted by NotCranky on June 29, 2015 - 9:33am.

The-Shoveler wrote:
After the initial cost of the Tank, pumps etc..

From what i understand, its about the same cost to have your water trucked in from out of state as it is to buy from the utility.


That doesn't strike me as a very clear understanding there.

Submitted by The-Shoveler on June 29, 2015 - 10:47am.

Maybe right, The person I talked to did not have hookups so there were no fee's that you get with County/city water hookups.

And they were very conservative water wise so they got away with only 1 delivery a month at a little over $100.00 dollars.

Case by case.

Submitted by fun4vnay2 on June 29, 2015 - 3:01pm.

Just my perspective of course:

When I came from NE to SD, I thought this place looks ugly. For me, usually, no greenness means no beauty..

It was good to see man made greenness but when I look at the lawns/grasses turning brown from green because of conversion, I get a revulsion feeling

Submitted by flyer on June 29, 2015 - 10:58pm.

Although we've never been as green as other areas with more rainfall, in years past, San Diego has had some beautiful green areas thanks to Mother Nature, but the drought is definitely taking a toll on our greenery. I grew up in LJ, and remember everything seemed to be green most of the time.

Even though we've lived and visited other places that have more lush greenery, I'll still take our brown to greener locations with tornadoes, hurricanes, below freezing temps, high heat and humidity, floods, and a host of other weather issues any day.

Since we're never planning to leave, we're hoping the new infrastructure methods and Mother Nature help us out again in the near future, but only time will tell.

Submitted by poorgradstudent on June 30, 2015 - 11:36am.

I'm not 100% satisfied with any of these answers. The bottom line is we have plenty of water for everyone to drink and bathe and wash our dishes. The area where quality of life may get hit is lawns and parks. But cities and communities are still watering plants on the medians of freeways, so it's not like we've honestly reached a dire level yet.

We have the technology for desalination. It's just expensive. The rising cost of water in California will probably continue to affect farmers and drive up food prices. There are certainly downsides to a drought, but it's not the apocalypse.

Submitted by an on June 30, 2015 - 3:55pm.

Have a bartering system where if they want produce from CA, either pay a "tax" in the form of water or pay it with $ and we can use that $ to build more desal plants.

Submitted by The-Shoveler on June 30, 2015 - 4:17pm.

NOAA Synopsis:

There is a greater than 90% chance that El Niño will continue through Northern Hemisphere fall 2015, and around an 85% chance it will last through the 2015-16 winter.

I just hope most of it ends up where it needs to be (up north).

The Odd thing is I keep hearing how Colorado was drowning, I mean some of that should have made it into the Colorado river.

Submitted by phaster on July 4, 2015 - 10:26am.

The-Shoveler wrote:
NOAA Synopsis:

There is a greater than 90% chance that El Niño will continue through Northern Hemisphere fall 2015, and around an 85% chance it will last through the 2015-16 winter.

I just hope most of it ends up where it needs to be (up north).

The Odd thing is I keep hearing how Colorado was drowning, I mean some of that should have made it into the Colorado river.

FWIW here is story on 60 minutes from a few months ago

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/depleting-th...

the segment describes why people have not really felt the full impact of the drought

its because like credit we are withdrawing/subsidizing a water intensive lifestyle (in the present) by using groundwater (which was built up over geological time)

Submitted by an on July 5, 2015 - 12:10am.

If the problem is that dire, I wonder why the US doesn't build a water pipeline to bring the abundant water the North East and Mid West get and pipe it to CA, where 1/4 of their food comes from? It's not a CA problem, so the federal government should pitch in for a solution. We can also pipe water from Alaska as well. There are plenty of snow there.

Submitted by jeff303 on July 6, 2015 - 9:19am.

The problem is power usage. Already, about 1/5 of power consumption in the state of California is for water-related uses (transport undoubtedly being a large portion of that). A representative from Poseidon water said during an interview on KPBS last week that the energy usage from the Carlsbad desal plant was "only 30% higher" than the current process' usage, per unit volume of water (one would expect it to be much higher than that, given how energy intensive desal is). I guess the point is, even ignoring the logistics and cost of construction, these hypothetical water pipelines would require an absolutely massive amount of energy to operate, and it's not clear where that would come from at this point.

Submitted by The-Shoveler on July 6, 2015 - 2:42pm.

But out of the 1/5 (or 20%) only approximately 20% is used for actually moving the water.

So about 5% of energy is used to actually just move the water from north to south etc....

The other 15% is more or less constant regardless of where you get it.

They would only need to get it as far west as lake powell really.

Or as far south as Lake Shasta.

Submitted by LAAFTERHOURS on July 6, 2015 - 9:55pm.

I am up at Squaw Valley for the 4th and what a sad scene. Lake tahoe is low, so low that commons beach has 40 yds of lake bottom exposed between the beach and the water. The truckee river is dry and there is no rafting. Docks are upwards of 10-15 feet out of the water.

My inlaws spent their lives up here and said this is something they have never experienced.

The water is still beautiful but sad to see the conditions the way they are.

Submitted by scaredyclassic on July 7, 2015 - 7:56am.

jeff303 wrote:
The problem is power usage. Already, about 1/5 of power consumption in the state of California is for water-related uses (transport undoubtedly being a large portion of that). A representative from Poseidon water said during an interview on KPBS last week that the energy usage from the Carlsbad desal plant was "only 30% higher" than the current process' usage, per unit volume of water (one would expect it to be much higher than that, given how energy intensive desal is). I guess the point is, even ignoring the logistics and cost of construction, these hypothetical water pipelines would require an absolutely massive amount of energy to operate, and it's not clear where that would come from at this point.

It will come from the next generation of smaller safer nuclear plants

Submitted by scaredyclassic on July 7, 2015 - 7:58am.

Thorium, not uranium is the future of power...

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/crux/2...

Pretty interesting history of where nuclear might be headed.

Submitted by livinincali on July 7, 2015 - 8:34am.

scaredyclassic wrote:
Thorium, not uranium is the future of power...

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/crux/2...

Pretty interesting history of where nuclear might be headed.

Of course here in America we're going to build some windmills and slap some Chinese made solar panels on our houses to solve our future energy problems. Thorium nuclear is a project where the government probably could get a decent return on it's investment, but it doesn't play in politics that well because it has that scary "Nuclear" word.

Submitted by NotCranky on February 24, 2016 - 11:12am.

I voted "not leaving until the tap runs dry" . Who needs plumbing anyway?

Submitted by moneymaker on February 24, 2016 - 11:57am.

My sailboat is ready for when the tide turns or California drops into the ocean. It's on a trailer, figured by the time I drove to a marina it would be too late.