SACRAMENTO (AP/CBS13) – Drought conditions intensified in parts of California over the past week, the U.S. Drought Monitor reported Thursday.
All of California is now in the moderate drought or worse category, officials said.READ MORE: Fourth Stimulus Check: Will You Get Another Relief Payment?
Areas of “exceptional drought” expanded in the southern and eastern Sierra Nevada in response to poor snowpack conditions, the monitor said in its weekly update.
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All of CA is now in moderate drought or worse (D1). The last time the whole state was D1 was in October 2014. Drought also intensified, with exceptional drought (D4) now covering 14% of California, up from 5% the week before. #USDroughtMonitor #CAdrought pic.twitter.com/pDxdSRsc7d
— Drought Center (@DroughtCenter) May 13, 2021
Exceptional is the worst level. Most of the rest of California is in the extreme or severe categories while small sections of the far north coast and the two southernmost counties are in moderate drought.
On Monday, Gov. Gavin Newsom expanded a drought emergency declaration to 41 of California’s 58 counties and said a further expansion is likely.
California’s winter rain and snowfall was far below normal, and much of the snowmelt was absorbed by the dry ground rather than running off into rivers that fill reservoirs.
The last time all of the state was rated at either moderate drought or worse was back in 2014.
As of Wednesday, the state Department of Water Resources reported the water content of the snowpack was just 7% of normal to date.MORE NEWS: What You Need To Know About California's Reopening
Copyright 2021 The Associated Press.