Due to the ongoing drought, receding waters at the Almaden Reservoir have revealed a car that was illegally dumped years ago and is now stuck in the lake bed, in San Jose, CA, Thursday, January 16, 2014.
By Kurtis Alexander SF Chron Updated 8:07 pm, Thursday, January 8, 2015
California not only sweated through its hottest year on record in 2014 but obliterated the previous mark by nearly 2 degrees, federal scientists said Thursday, while experiencing firsthand some of the worst fears of a warming planet — from intensified drought to melting snowpack. The state’s average temperature last year was 61.5 degrees, more than 4 degrees above the 20th century average, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported. The previous hottest year was 1934, at 59.7 degrees, though many of the balmiest periods have come more recently, with seven of the 10 hottest years within the past two decades.
“There’s a very clear warming trend in California,” said Noah Diffenbaugh, an associate professor of environmental Earth system science at Stanford University who studies climate change. “And not only are we seeing clear evidence of global warming and its impacts, but we’re now seeing the impacts of global warming right here in western North America.”
Scientists say rising temperatures have sometimes contributed to smoggier air, stunted growth of plants, extreme weather events and other abnormalities in the Golden State, but the biggest impacts recently have come with the crippling drought. Though many are hesitant to blame the state’s three-year dry spell on global warming, consensus is that hot weather has exacerbated the situation — for example, by increasing evaporation…..