Even With Winter Rains, the Community Remains in Drought

The Goleta Valley Needs More than One Above Average Year

The last five years of below average rainfall produced extreme drought conditions, and recent rains have not been enough to make up for that deficit. Even with winter storms Lake Cachuma is still only half full and remains below the historical average. The groundwater basin is approaching historic lows, and drought conditions continue to grip the region.

Until we receive another “normal” or above average year of rainfall, conservation remains critical. The Federal Government recently informed the District that it will be receiving only 40% of normal water supply from the lake. This is an improvement over the zero percent allocation received the last two years, but it serves as yet another reminder that the community hasn’t returned to normal conditions.

The District remains in a Stage III Water Shortage Emergency, which is consistent with a projected 26-35% supply deficiency. The drought isn’t over for Southern Santa Barbara County.