BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ó




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          |SENATE RULES COMMITTEE            |                        SB 758|
          |Office of Senate Floor Analyses   |                              |
          |(916) 651-1520    Fax: (916)      |                              |
          |327-4478                          |                              |
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                                UNFINISHED BUSINESS 


          Bill No:  SB 758
          Author:   Block (D)
          Amended:  8/17/15  
          Vote:     21  

           SENATE NATURAL RES. & WATER COMMITTEE:  8-0, 4/28/15
           AYES:  Pavley, Stone, Allen, Hertzberg, Hueso, Jackson,  
            Monning, Wolk
           NO VOTE RECORDED:  Vidak

           SENATE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE:  7-0, 5/28/15
           AYES:  Lara, Bates, Beall, Hill, Leyva, Mendoza, Nielsen

           SENATE FLOOR:  38-0, 6/3/15
           AYES:  Allen, Anderson, Bates, Beall, Berryhill, Block,  
            Cannella, De León, Gaines, Galgiani, Glazer, Hall, Hancock,  
            Hernandez, Hertzberg, Hill, Hueso, Huff, Jackson, Lara, Leno,  
            Leyva, Liu, McGuire, Mendoza, Mitchell, Monning, Moorlach,  
            Morrell, Nguyen, Nielsen, Pan, Pavley, Roth, Stone, Vidak,  
            Wieckowski, Wolk
           NO VOTE RECORDED:  Fuller, Runner

           ASSEMBLY FLOOR:  73-0, 9/4/15 - See last page for vote

           SUBJECT:   Atmospheric Rivers: Research, Mitigation, and  
                     Climate Forecasting Program


          SOURCE:    Author

          DIGEST:   This bill establishes the Atmospheric Rivers:  
          Research, Mitigation and Climate Forecasting Program at the  
          Department of Water Resources (DWR) in order to, contingent on  
          appropriation of special fund monies, conduct research relating  
          to climate forecasting and the causes and impacts that climate  








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          change has on atmospheric rivers.  

          Assembly Amendments expand the authorized program to include  
          climate forecasting.

          ANALYSIS:   Existing law establishes DWR to manage the state's  
          water resources. Within DWR is the Hydrology and Flood  
          Operations Office that is responsible for directing DWR's flood  
          and water supply forecasting operations, hydrology and  
          climatology studies, emergency flood operations, and flood  
          control project inspections and encroachment permitting.  The  
          Office also includes the California State Climatologist.

          This bill:

          1)Establishes the Atmospheric Rivers: Research, Mitigation and  
            Climate Forecasting Program. 

          2)Requires DWR, upon appropriation of special fund moneys,  
            including private funds, to study climate forecasting and the  
            causes and impacts that climate change has on atmospheric  
            rivers. 

          3)Requires DWR to take actions, including through reservoir  
            management, to increase water supply and reliability of water  
            resources by capturing water generated by atmospheric rivers.

          Comments
          
          What are atmospheric rivers? According to the National Oceanic  
          and Atmospheric Administration, atmospheric rivers are  
          relatively narrow regions in the atmosphere that are responsible  
          for most of the horizontal transport of water vapor outside of  
          the tropics. On the west coast, 30-50% of the annual  
          precipitation on average comes from a few atmospheric river  
          events.

          FISCAL EFFECT:   Appropriation:    No          Fiscal  
          Com.:YesLocal:   No


          According to the Assembly Appropriations Committee, this bill  








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          creates the following special fund or private fund cost  
          pressures:


          1)Approximately $3.5 million for additional sensors to help  
            monitor the formation of the Sierra Barrier Jet and the  
            dynamics of moisture flow up the Central Valley and into the  
            Burney Gap (includes operation and maintenance costs of  
            $500,000 per year).


          2)Approximately $750,000 per year to continue operations of the  
            expanded extreme precipitation network.


          3)Approximately $500,000 to improve predictability of the  
            formation and strength of atmospheric rivers.  


          SUPPORT:   (Verified9/4/15)


          Bay Area Flood Protection Agencies Association
          Orange County Water District
          San Diego County Water Authority 
          Santa Clara Valley Water District
          Sonoma County Water Agency


          OPPOSITION:  (Verified  9/4/15)


          None received


          ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT:     According to the author, "California  
          has the most variable precipitation annually of any location in  
          the U.S., ranging from severe drought to major floods.  Research  
          has shown that this variability is largely due to a weather  
          condition known as 'atmospheric rivers' (AR). AR are responsible  
          for 30-50% of California's precipitation and water supply in  
          just a handful of days each year.  Pineapple Express Storms are  








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          a common example of AR. Better forecasting of ARs (from hours,  
          to days, weeks and seasons) has the potential to enable new  
          levels of both water supply and flood protection through the use  
          of 'Forecast-Informed Reservoir Operations' (FIRO).  A pilot  
          project to test the feasibility of FIRO is being planned by an  
          expert committee on a vital reservoir on the Russian River, Lake  
          Mendocino. It is led by researchers at the Center for Western  
          Weather and Water Extremes at the University of California San  
          Diego and the Sonoma County Water Agency. This pilot project has  
          the potential to predict AR patterns to make intelligent water  
          management decisions in order to both collect additional water  
          supply and protect against floods. Seasonal AR outlooks are  
          another promising direction that could help water managers and  
          emergency preparedness officials anticipate and prepare for  
          drought and/or flood.  Developing such outlooks is on the  
          cutting edge of science today and SB 758 ensures the state  
          develops a program to study AR."

           ASSEMBLY FLOOR:  73-0, 9/4/15
           AYES: Achadjian, Alejo, Travis Allen, Baker, Bloom, Bonilla,  
            Bonta, Brown, Burke, Calderon, Campos, Chang, Chau, Chávez,  
            Chiu, Chu, Cooley, Cooper, Dababneh, Dahle, Daly, Dodd,  
            Eggman, Frazier, Beth Gaines, Cristina Garcia, Eduardo Garcia,  
            Gatto, Gipson, Gonzalez, Gordon, Gray, Grove, Hadley, Harper,  
            Roger Hernández, Holden, Irwin, Jones, Kim, Lackey, Levine,  
            Linder, Lopez, Low, Maienschein, Mathis, Mayes, McCarty,  
            Medina, Melendez, Mullin, Nazarian, Obernolte, O'Donnell,  
            Olsen, Patterson, Perea, Quirk, Rendon, Rodriguez, Salas,  
            Santiago, Steinorth, Mark Stone, Thurmond, Ting, Wagner,  
            Waldron, Wilk, Williams, Wood, Atkins
           NO VOTE RECORDED: Bigelow, Brough, Gallagher, Gomez,  
            Jones-Sawyer, Ridley-Thomas, Weber

          Prepared by: Dennis O'Connor / N.R. & W. / (916) 651-4116
          9/4/15 18:02:48


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