The dry start to the water year has water resource advisors allotting only 10 percent of requested water deliveries.
DWR Director Karla Nemeth says, while [the DWR] are hopeful that this El Niño pattern will generate wet weather, this early in the season, [the department] has to plan with drier conditions in mind,”
The initial SWP allocation forecast looks ahead to 2024 and only applies to water deliveries next year. The allocation is calculated based on October and November precipitation, dry soils, runoff, and storage in Lake Oroville. It has no bearing on current water supplies or water captured in 2023. Most reservoirs in the state remain above average for this time of year.
As winter progresses, the allocation forecast may increase if California sees an increase in rain and snowfall.
Allocations are updated monthly as snowpack, rainfall, and runoff information is assessed, with a final allocation typically determined in May or June.