Sunday, August 09, 2009

Sierra Nevada watershed

Three years ago, I took this video at the Army Corps of Engineers Bay Model visitor's center in Sausalito, California.

It illustrates with LEDs the storage of fresh water in snow and ice in the Sierra Nevada, and its flow down the slopes, through the valley, and out to sea through the Delta and San Francisco Bay.

If climate change warms up and dries out California in the summer, as models currently predict, less water will be stored as snow over the winter, leaving less fresh water to flow out to sea and through the Delta in the summer. Not only will this mean less fresh water for immediate human use, but less for agriculture, wildlife, and fresh/salt balance in the Delta.

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