Los Angeles Winter Storms Intensified By ... Farm Irrigation?
In 2 Making Images / Flickr
The Central Valley is America's salad bowl. But providing the world with all that food -- $37.5 billion worth in 2010, making California the nation's top agricultural state -- takes a lot of water.
And that has strange consequences, according to a new UC Irvine study.
Turns out that some of that irrigation comes back to L.A. in the form of ...
UCLA Bruins Women's Basketball vs. Arizona Wildcats Womens Basketball
TicketsSun., Jan. 29, 2:00pm
Anaheim Ducks v. Colorado Avalanche
TicketsTue., Jan. 31, 7:00pm
Los Angeles Lakers v Denver Nuggets - Verified Resale Tickets
TicketsTue., Jan. 31, 7:30pm
CSUN Men?s Basketball vs. Long Beach State Men's Basketball
TicketsWed., Feb. 1, 7:00pm
Yep, UC Irvine earth system science professor Jay Famiglietti and his team published their research on the Valley's contribution to rainfall in today's edition of the Geophysical Research Letters journal.
All that extra juice pumped into the lettuce, nuts and fruit of the Central Valley "accelerates the severity of monsoons and other potentially destructive seasonal weather events," according to a summary of the research.
It can increase rain by 15 percent or more.
Calla Cakes / Flickr
Irrigation in the Valley leads to a 28 percent increase in runoff for the Colorado River, which provides agua for 35 million people, including the fine citizens of Los Angeles, San Diego, Las Vegas and Phoenix.
But it's so much agricultural irrigation that it also fires up our annual storm cycle and draws extra vapor from the Gulf of Mexico, intensifying our weather.
Famiglietti says "it's like throwing fuel on a fire."
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories Newsletter Our daily newsletter delivers quick clicks to keep you in the know
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in Los Angeles, delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday.