Apr 9, 2016

Showers Delay California Ball Game but Won't Ease Drought

Southern California Rain
Heavy clouds and rain pass over downtown Los Angeles on Friday, April 8, 2016. The first of two weather systems has brought showers to Southern California but rainfall has been scattered and mostly light. The National Weather Service says radar shows showers running across the region early Friday but not much of the rain is reaching the ground. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel) Photo by Associated Press
LOS ANGELES — Apr 9, 2016, 5:29 PM ET

April showers delayed a ball game and prompted flood advisories as they scooted through California on Saturday but the overall rain totals won't do much to ease five years of drought, forecasters said.
Light rain began falling Friday and scattered showers should continue into Sunday, with a slight chance of thunderstorms, according to the National Weather Service.
In San Francisco, a downpour delayed the Giants-Los Angeles Dodgers baseball game for 41 minutes.
In Central California, where up to 2 inches of rain fell, the National Weather Service issued flood advisories until 3 p.m. for Merced, Mariposa and southwestern Tuolumne counties.

Apr 8, 2016

Overflowing California reservoirs not enough to quench drought


By BEN TRACY CBS NEWS April 8, 2016, 7:10 PM

LAKE OROVILLE, Calif. -- Southern California is expected to get much-needed rain this weekend, and Northern California has received plenty in recent weeks. But when it comes to drought relief, it's hardly a drop in the bucket.

Two million gallons of water per minute were being released from one of California's largest reservoirs because it was simply too full.

Mar 16, 2016

One Residential Project in San Gabriel, California

Kurapia SOD from Delta Bluegrass was planted by EcoTech Services on January 27, 2016 in San Gabriel, California. The images show how Kurapia set the landscape about 30 days later after it was planted. The area is approximately 900sf and the total cost including labor, hauling turf removal, and Kurapia was about $4,700.00. The cost does not include the cost of irrigation. The homeowner did apply for the turf rebate through MWD and product rebate.

Beautiful project! Job well done!!

Photos by EcoTech Services


Gayle Anderson reported UC Tested Utility Ground cover, Kurapia as a new plant product that can us water and water bill on her program, Drought Watch on Los Angeles KTLA Morning News. Mr. Edward L. Wallace, a landscape contractor of Midwest Landscaping in Long Beach, California was interviewed and assisting the program professionally. Thanks to Gayle and Edward for introducing Kurapia to making better environment for our community!!

Feb 20, 2016

Feb 16, 2016

El Nino Stormwater Tested

June 16, 2015

Oct 5, 2015

 Glendora Ridge Road was shut down between Glendora Mountain and Mt. Baldy roads as a precaution ahead of heavy rain.
Glendora Ridge Road was shut down between Glendora Mountain and Mt. Baldy roads as a precaution ahead of heavy rain. (KABC)

Jan 8, 2016

Kurapia remains intact after the storm. The mud soil and some debris are seen over the Kurapia ground cover. Kurapia wasn't washed and is still under it.

Feb 16, 2016

Observing Kurapia's coming back up growing from soil.


Bioswales are landscape elements designed to remove silt and pollution from surface runoff water. They consist of a swaled drainage course with gently sloped sides (less than six percent) and filled with vegetation, compost and/or riprap.

Feb 14, 2016

Water bill hikes rates for 4% due to drought

LA DWP, other utilities to raise water rates because of drought

By Mike Reicher, Los Angeles Daily News

Enjoying those lower water bills from 3-minute showers and your new drought-tolerant landscaping? Well, prepare to pay a little more to make up for your conservation.
Throughout California, consumers have conserved during this four-year drought and purchased less water from their utilities, leaving some water agencies operating in the red and drawing down reserves. Officials now say they need to pass some of the costs back to customers.
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power will hike rates to cover some of its lost revenue, its civilian board decided Tuesday. Most DWP customers will pay 4 percent more for water beginning in January. The average residential monthly bill will increase from $49.73 to $51.53, DWP officials said.

Feb 10, 2016

Feb 7, 2016

'Exceptional' Drought Improves Only 2 Percent After California Storms

More than 42 percent of California remains under exceptional drought after last week's El Niño-influenced storms

This week's California Drought Monitor shows only a 2 percent improvement to the exceptional drought category -- the most severe -- in Northern California following storms that brought rain and snow to the state. Water reservoirs remain below normal as the state's hopes for a degree of drought recovery hinge on the effects of a strong El Niño.

Feb 4, 2016

Water Boards Fact Sheet


No one knows how the future will unfold. While the State may return to “normal,” or even to above average hydrologic water conditions in 2016 or 2017, such an outcome is far from certain, nor is it certain that one year of average or above-average water conditions will relieve the State from these historic drought conditions. Continued water conservation is imperative. Moving forward, the State Water Board is committed to working with water suppliers on implementing the Emergency Regulation, assessing water conditions throughout the spring, and adapting requirements as appropriate based on water supply conditions in April. The State is meeting the Governor’s 25 percent cumulative statewide conservation goal because Californians have risen to the occasion. As the State Water Board acts on the Governor’s Executive Order B-36-15, it will consider the lessons learned from the implementation of the current executive order and make adjustments to the Emergency Regulation as needed. The State Water Board will also begin to work with other agencies and stakeholders to develop longer term measures to ensure water continues to be used efficiently. (This fact sheet was last updated on January 15, 2016)

Extending the Emergency Water Conservation Regulation

Jan 22, 2016

Beverly Hills Is Fined for Using Too Much Water in Drought

New York Times

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — This famously wealthy city was founded by businessmen who were seeking oil but found something more precious — water — and decided to stay. Now, Beverly Hills has become one of the first places in California to be slapped with fines for using too much water during the state’s devastating drought.
On Friday, California water officials announced that they had issued their first fines in history for failing to meet state-mandated conservation orders, assessing penalties to this city and three other water districts. Over all, Californians cut water use by 26.1 percent in September compared with September 2013, the fourth consecutive month they have surpassed the governor’s goal of a 25 percent reduction.
But some districts had not done nearly enough to cut back, officials said Friday. Along with Beverly Hills, the Indio Water Authority, the Coachella Valley Water District and the City of Redlands were fined $61,000 — or $500 a day since the start of June, when the restrictions went into effect. All of them have missed their state-mandated conservation targets — which range up to 36 percent compared with 2013 — by more than 8 percentage points since June 1.
Cris Carrigan, director of enforcement for the State Water Resources Control Board, said the four districts had either taken action too late to make a difference in their water use or had not stressed the need to cut back enough to their customers.
“We could have saved even more water if some residents, businesses and institutions in these communities had stepped up,” Mr. Carrigan said. “These penalties send a signal that there are consequences.”
All four of the districts will be able to appeal the fines. If they do not get their water use down to the mandated levels, the state could issue cease-and-desist orders, which come with fines of up to $10,000 per day.
Beverly Hills, the only one of the districts in an urban, coastal area, has fallen nearly 12 percentage points short of its 32 percent conservation standard. Mr. Carrigan said the district did little until October.
“The city has not demonstrated improved conservation,” he said. “Per capita consumption is not decreasing.”
In an email, Cheryl Friedling, a deputy city manager for Beverly Hills, outlined new measures the city was taking, including “penalty surcharges, hiring additional staff to address water violations and developing individualized conservation programs that will help us achieve reductions we need.”
But Mr. Carrigan warned that these “very well might not be the last of the fines.”
The districts that were fined this week are hardly the only ones that have failed to meet their conservation standards. More than 50 suppliers were at least 5 percent short of meeting their conservation targets in September.
And state officials acknowledged that meeting conservation goals could become more difficult in the winter: Most water use is traditionally during the summer, so there was more room to save in July and August.
Felicia Marcus, chairwoman of the state water board, expressed optimism that the state could remain above the 25 percent threshold, even if conservation sagged in the coming months.
“The fact that we’re up and over is good,” Ms. Marcus said. “Would I like a bigger cushion? Yeah, definitely. But I think we’re still in the ballpark.”
Also on Friday, Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency over a bark beetle infestation that has killed tens of millions of trees during the drought. He is seeking federal resources to assist with the removal of dead trees.
“California is facing the worst epidemic of tree mortality in its modern history,” Mr. Brown said in a letter to Tom Vilsack, the federal agriculture secretary. “A crisis of this magnitude demands action on all fronts.”

Jan 13, 2016

A testimonial from homeowner

The only time I watered the Kurapia was the initial week of planting. 

After the planting, I was worried a couple times last summer that the heat and dryness would kill the plants.  I attempted to fix my sprinkler system and give the plants a drink, but the location gets significant foot traffic from kids and the cars parking along the street.  Hence I was not able to water them due to broken sprinklers.  And to my surprise the Kurapia continued to thrive through the summer, fall, and winter.  

M. B.
Venice Beach, CA

Jan 4, 2016

Will this El Niño end the drought?

Massive El Niño gains strength, likely to drench key California drought zone

Los Angeles Times 
Wednesday Jan 13, 2016

That's virtually an impossibility. By one calculation, California’s mountainous north would need 2.5 times to three times its average precipitation to end this drought, and the record is just nearly double the average annual rain and snowfall.
A big question is also what comes after this El Niño ends -- and it could be renewed drought. 
"My scenario is that the El Niño delivers as expected, and then El Niño switches to a La Niña, which is what happened in 1998," Patzert said, which brings drought. "It went into two years of below-normal snowpack and rainfall," and the start of a dry spell. 
El Niño historically can't be counted on to keep California wet. The last big El Niño came 17 years ago, and they come too infrequently for California to rely on. California gets more of its water over a 25-year period from storms from the Gulf of Alaska and Pineapple Expresses instead. 

"Over a 25-year period, over the long term, El Niño provides only 7% of our water. So as much as we’re hyping it, it’s not a big player," Patzert said. "It’s fast and furious, but it’s too irregular – the gap between El Niños is too long to build any statues to El Niño to be a drought-buster. If we were going to build a drought-buster statue downtown, it would be North Pacific storms or Pineapple Expresses."