California experienced the driest January, February, and March in a record dating back over 100 years in 2022 and the Sierra Nevadas receiving just six inches of precipitation in that time.  All of California’s cities are under a drought emergency proclamation with the state’s largest reservoirs currently at half of their historical averages, and the state’s snowpack is just 4 percent of average, as of June 3rd.

What does that mean for industrial stormwater?

The way we see it, it will impact the stormwater community in the following ways:

  • Harder to get the required two samples from January to June. If you don’t grab the two samples between January and February, the chances of getting other sample after February were slim to almost nonexistent for many of our clients.  Beside that rain in March, we have seen no storms on this part of the globe.
  • More inventory of contaminants. Even if there is no rain, but industrial & maintenance operations must continue. The fugitives and contamination reaching the outside of the facilities continue to accumulate on the surfaces.  This means that those sporadic rains latter on the year are like first flush: The loading of contaminant on this rain events is significantly higher.

We have noticed that our metal removing medias last longer on this weather since they are treating less rain compared to Washington and Oregon.  We have clients on Year 4 without replacing the media, yet the media still working. Read the case of study of this client

The truth is that we all need to help in California to alleviate the stress.  Here are some links to some ideas on how to take action :

https://drought.ca.gov/

https://drought.ca.gov/water-saving-tips/

https://saveourwater.com/News-and-Events/Latest-News/Here-Are-the-Tips-You-Need-to-Prepare-Your-Yard-for-Summer

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