CA Drought Relief this Weekend

November 26th, 2014 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

Storm system approaching N. California on Nov. 25, 2014.

Storm system approaching California on Nov. 25, 2014.

A Pacific storm system continues its trek to California where it promises to bring 3 to 6 inches of much needed rain. The storm will stall and weaken just off-shore this weekend as another system from the Gulf of Alaska drops down and causes re-intensification. The result will be 3-5 days of on-and-off rains from Friday through Tuesday, with isolated areas possibly getting 9 inches or more (NCEP/WCP graphic courtesy of, click for full size):

6-day total rainfall forecast (Nov. 26 - Dec. 2) from the NCEP Weather Prediction Center.

6-day total rainfall forecast (Nov. 26 – Dec. 2) from the NCEP Weather Prediction Center.

Heavy rains are needed by reservoirs, currently at record-low levels, since light rains simply soak into the parched ground. While the storm will also bring 1-2 feet of welcome snowfall to the Sierra Nevada, the expected heavy rains are the most beneficial for filling reservoirs.

27 Responses to “CA Drought Relief this Weekend”

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  1. jimc says:

    Just what the doctor ordered.

  2. Pathway says:

    Don’t discount the light rains soaking into the ground as the ground water must be replenished for long term water flow.

  3. Ron C. says:

    Now if that storm keeps its promise . . .

  4. Doug.Cotton. says:

    “Of droughts and flooding rains … ” none of which have anything what-so-ever to do with carbon dioxide.

    In my book “Why It’s Not Carbon Dioxide After All” I put forward an hypothesis which correctly explains temperature data throughout the Solar System and no doubt beyond. There is no scope for any additional warming by so-called greenhouse gases, and in fact I show why these gases cool rather than warm. Empirical evidence in a study I published therein also confirms that the main greenhouse gas water vapour certainly cools. This completely debunks the greenhouse conjecture. All global warming is natural and will end around the year 2058 after which nearly 500 years of cooling will commence.

    In applying my hypothesis to Venus I allowed for the variation in specific heat of carbon dioxide, so we get a curved temperature profile. It still works, just as it does on Uranus. There’s little point in discussing a planet like Mars with an insignificant atmosphere, but the hypothesis still works.

    But I don’t use barometric equations because pressure is irrelevant. Pressure is proportional to the product of temperature and density. High pressure does not maintain high temperatures. Temperature and density cause pressure, not the other way around.

    The state of thermodynamic equilibrium (which the Second Law of Thermodynamics says will be approached) has a density gradient and a temperature gradient. The pressure gradient is merely a corollary. Until you all understand this, you understand nothing about atmospheric physics.

    And that is why calculations based on barometric equations give only approximate results. Those who think temperature is caused by pressure are mistaken. Where does the required thermal energy come from? That’s the whole point of my book wherein I’m one of only two authors to explain (independently) the energy flows from valid physics.

    None of you understands how the energy gets from the cooler regions (<400K on Venus) where it is absorbed from Solar radiation to the hotter Venus surface and raises its temperature from 732K to 737K over the 4 months of sunshine. To raise a temperature you need net input of thermal energy, and that does not come from radiation into the Venus surface. Nor does pressure magically supply energy.

    • jimc says:

      This week Im even thankful for you you loony bast you loony person.

    • Doug...Cotton says:

      And still not one of you can explain how the necessary thermal energy gets into the surface of Earth and Venus, or to the base of the nominal troposphere of Uranus other than with the valid physics I have presented based on thousands of hours of research and about 50 years of helping my students understand physics. You have no understanding of the physics involved, which you won’t find yet in textbooks because it is 21st century atmospheric physics. Don’t forget my $5,000 offer, though I doubt that you would even get off Square 1. So, what’s your explanation? I can’t wait to expose your lack of understanding of physics, my friends.

      • ren says:

        Explain to what determines the density of the gas on Earth. Is the gravity or magnetic field (waves of the high atmosphere)? I ask, as a laik. On Mars, there is almost no magnetic field.

  5. Mike Maguire says:

    This should be a huge event and stormy, even south of San Diego.
    Latest 7 day rain totals:

    Latest 18z GFS Nov 26(132 hours), has this jet stream revved way up. Increasing/topping with a roaring 150 knot jet streak(180 mph) at 200 mb over S.Calif for late Mon/Tue(12/1-12/2)!!!!|500_vort_ht|1000_500_thick|850_temp_ht_s.gif&model=gfs&area=namer&cycle=18&param=200_wnd_ht|500_vort_ht|1000_500_thick|850_temp_ht&fhr=132&group=Model+Guidance&preselected_formatted_cycle_date=20141126+18+UTC&ps=model&use_mins=no&scrollx=0&scrolly=0|500_vort_ht|1000_500_thick|850_temp_ht_s.gif&model=gfs&area=epac&cycle=18&param=200_wnd_ht|500_vort_ht|1000_500_thick|850_temp_ht&fhr=132&group=Model+Guidance&preselected_formatted_cycle_date=20141126+18+UTC&ps=model&use_mins=no&scrollx=0&scrolly=0

  6. Alanf says:

    Hope that Alaska system moves south quickly.
    Another inch or two in the Pacific Northwest which is already quite soggy.
    Followed by freezing Monday

  7. Happy Thanksgiving, Dr. Spencer.
    And thank you for all the good science.

  8. Andy says:

    What will alarmists have to whine about once the drought is over?

  9. .Doug..Cotton. says:

    Worth quoting in full ….

    The Space and Science Research Corporation (SSRC) announces today (November 20, 2014) an important set of climate change predictions dealing with the coming cold climate epoch that will dominate global temperatures for the next thirty years.

    According to analysis of the most reliable solar activity trends and climate models based on the Relational Cycle Theory (RC Theory), the SSRC concludes the following:

    1. The Earth is about to begin a steep drop in global temperatures off its present global temperature plateau. This plateau has been caused by the absence of growth in global temperatures for 18 years, the start of global cooling in the atmosphere and the oceans, and the end of a short period of moderate solar heating from an unusually active secondary peak in solar cycle #24.

    2. Average global atmospheric and oceanic temperatures will drop significantly beginning between 2015 and 2016 and will continue with only temporary reversals until they stabilize during a long cold temperature base lasting most of the 2030’s and 2040’s. The bottom of the next global cold climate caused by a “solar hibernation” (a pronounced reduction in warming energy coming from the Sun) is expected to be reached by the year 2031.

    3. The predicted temperature decline will continue for the next fifteen years and will likely be the steepest ever recorded in human history, discounting past short-duration volcanic events.

    4. Global average temperatures during the 2030’s will reach a level of at least 1.5 C lower than the peak temperature year of the past 100 years established in 1998. The temperatures during the 2030’s will correspond roughly to that observed from 1793 to 1830, shortly after the founding of the United States of America. This average lower global temperature of 1.5 C on average, translates to declines in temperatures that will be devastating for crop growing regions in the mid latitudes of the planet.

    • Lewis says:


      The advent of cooler weather, which will, as you state, be devastating to crops is my greater fear. If the seas continue to rise, due to warmer weather, certain areas would be inundated with sea water while others, notably in Canada and Russia would become more arable. If these are our choices, I’ll take more arable land. Why the alarmists are so enamoured of the idea of making temperatures lower is beyond me.

      But, as I’ve stated before, there are some people who believe mankind has a lot more influence over natural events than is true. These are the same type people who offered human sacrifices to the gods in order to assuage their collective guilt.

      I suggest we have not evolved since that time.

      I’m thankful for farmers raising turkeys, cranberries, potatoes, peas and collards.

      And to the 3% of scientists who are not quailed by opposing numbers.

  10. .Doug..Cotton. says:

    The damage bill in Brisbane (Australia) from yesterday’s bad weather is over $100 million.

  11. BoneDryInCALI says:

    Such a joy to stand outside and feel the raindrops and moist air, been nearly a year since I last saw a rain event that lasted several hours. Please, please, we need many more like this one. Hopefully they will remain slow and steady drizzles that can begin to replenish the reservoirs.

  12. Steve Scott says:

    The storm will stall and weaken just off-shore this weekend as another system from the Gulf of Alaska drops down and causes re-intensification. Tampa Tile Floors

  13. Dlarr says:

    this is one of the key factors I was looking for spring

  14. Jonathan says:

    Keep trying guys ball

  15. Noah Rodriguez says:

    I hope you are all okay there. Keep safe man.
    Best regards, moab property management.

  16. jselleck893 says:

    Saving nature is important

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  19. Madel Smith says:

    It seems like you are describing a Pacific storm system approaching California and the potential weather conditions it may bring. While I don’t have access to real-time weather data or the ability to display graphics, I can provide some general information about Pacific storm systems and their effects.

    Pacific storm systems, also known as atmospheric rivers, are long, narrow bands of moisture that transport large amounts of water vapor from the Pacific Ocean to land areas. These systems can bring significant rainfall and are often responsible for heavy precipitation events in California and other coastal regions.

    Based on the information you provided, it appears that this particular storm system is expected to bring 3 to 6 inches of rainfall to California, which is considered a substantial amount and can help alleviate drought conditions. The storm is projected to stall and weaken just offshore over the weekend, likely due to interacting with another system from the Gulf of Alaska. This interaction could cause re-intensification of the storm and prolong the period of rainfall.

    The forecast suggests that the on-and-off rain is expected to continue from Friday through Tuesday, spanning around 3 to 5 days. It’s important to note that weather forecasts can change, so it’s always recommended to follow updates from reliable sources such as the National Weather Service or local meteorological agencies.

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