Study Finds That Last Season = Worst Snow Season For California in 500 Years!

Study Finds That Last Season = Worst Snow Season For California in 500 Years!

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Study Finds That Last Season = Worst Snow Season For California in 500 Years!

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Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 1.30.39 PM

Image Credit: NASA

We all know that California is coming off a really bad ski season. However, a new study published in Nature Climate Change finds that the 2015 record low snowpack level in California’s Sierra Nevada mountain range is unprecedented in comparison to the past 500 years.

“Using tree-ring based records that date back to 1500, scientists from the University of Arizona, University of Arkansas, and NCEI’s Paleoclimatology Program expect that the current snowpack low has a strong likelihood of occurring only once every 500 years and only once every 1,000 years below 7,000 feet. Such an exceptional low level poses significant challenges to California, which receives over 30% of its yearly water supply from Sierra Nevada snowpack.” – NOAA

California is currently in a 4-year drought.

“Our study really points to the extreme character of the 2014-15 winter. This is not just unprecedented over 80 years — it’s unprecedented over 500 years.  We should be prepared for this type of snow drought to occur much more frequently because of rising temperatures.” – Valerie Trouet, associate professor in the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research at the University of Arizona

Things could change this season with the forecast of strong El Niño conditions. (“Godzilla” El Niño Forecasted For 2016 Ski Season)

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