When California needs to flush its stormwater out to sea — and when it doesn't

As the March rains loosen more Southern California mud and fill more Northern California reservoirs, the state still flirts with drought and we still run short of water.

Los Angeles is engineered to hustle filthy storm water to sea as quickly as possible, as if it were the evil fluid of the primordial abyss, yet we spend millions to import precious snowmelt from the Sierras. It's all just water. Meanwhile, the Trump administration proposes to raise Shasta Dam in the far north of the state to capture more rainwater to send south, but Democrats resist. Does any of it make any sense?

It does, but it requires some time contemplating a map of California.

In vastly oversimplified terms, California has two great mountain ranges that run north-south. Smaller Pacific storms drop their payloads on coastal cities when rain clouds run into the lower, western ranges. The bigger, colder storms make it east to the Sierras before releasing their water as snow.

Read the entire article at LAtimes.com