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Water Supplies Adequate Despite Thin Snowpack

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California Department of Water Resources (DWR) Chief of Cooperative Snow Survey Frank Gehrke (L) weighs a snow sample while assisted by Kasey Schimke, DWR Assistant Director for Legislative Affairs January 29, 2010 near Meyers, California. (Max Whittaker/Getty Images)

California Department of Water Resources (DWR) Chief of Cooperative Snow Survey Frank Gehrke (L) weighs a snow sample while assisted by Kasey Schimke, DWR Assistant Director for Legislative Affairs January 29, 2010 near Meyers, California. (Max Whittaker/Getty Images)

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Sierra snow depths are well below normal for this time of year, but reservoirs that remain full from last year’s massive snowpack are expected to provide adequate water supplies for California’s farms and cities.

The state Department of Water Resources conducted its fifth and final manual snow survey of the season Tuesday. Water content in the Sierra snowpack was measured at 40 percent of normal. It was 190 percent of normal this time last year.

The department expects to deliver 60 percent of the water requested by users of the State Water Project, which supplies 25 million Californians and more than 1 million acres of agricultural land.

The winter snowpack is crucial because it provides about a third of California’s water supply as it melts throughout spring and summer.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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