The California Drought

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by tjprexler
Last updated 6 years ago

Social Studies

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The California Drought

The California Drought

What is a drought? A drought is a prolonged period of abnormally low rainfall resulting in a shortage of water. The atmospheric conditions associated with the California drought are far more likely to occur under today's global warming than in the climate that existed before humans emitted large amounts of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. A massive factor that is helping the on going drought is a vast zone of high pressure in the atmosphere off the west coast. It's nearly four miles high and 2,000 miles long! Like a brick wall, the mass of high pressure air has been blocking pacific winter storms from coming ashore in California, deflecting them up into Alaska and B.C, even delivering rain to the east coast! Similar high pressure zones pop up all the time during most winters, but they usually break down allowing rain to get to California. How ever this one has anchored itself for an ongoing 26 months, since December 2012, making it a record and leaving researchers scratching their heads. Researchers are not sure what is keeping this ridge so persistent, some scientist say it's related to climate change. California has seen a major decrease in their rainfall and water supply. Even mountain peaks are receiving little to no snow in the winters. However there is some controversy on whether the true reason for this drought is climate change. Most the scientist that believe climate change is the true cause of the California drought say it's because of an increase in temperature over the last century. The reason the temperature has increased is because of all the CO2 in the atmosphere. Long wave raidiation can have an effect on the increase in temperature change. When land and water bodies absorb and then later release long wave radiation back into the atmosphere, it gets trapped by all of the CO2 (that us humans have emitted) and causes the earth to warm. In my opinion there are many factors leading up to the California drought including climate change and all the other major factors we have went over.

In this presentation we will be going over the Califonia Drought in detail relating to climate change. As well as taking a close look at different videos, pictures, atricles, newspaper clips and blogs to enhance our understanding of the California Drought!


The Califonia drought has been going for 26 months, since December 2012!

A preserved car in the mix of the drought.

Map of the drought speading.

Newspaper article regarding the drought.

A neat video explaining the condition of the drought

Check out this site for many drought topics to blog on!

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