In April 2017, after five years of little rain, the winter storms were more than sufficient for former Gov. Jerry Brown to rescind the state of emergency, which he declared in January 2014, because of the statewide drought.
However, drought conditions persisted throughout the state, even though the worst seemed over. Then, the winter of 2017-18 was the sixth dry and drought year in the previous seven years.
However, the winter of 2018-19 has eradicated the drought. “This rain has ended the drought across Southern California for the first time since 2011,” said Alex Tardy, meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s San Diego office.
For the first time in years, the NWS has not designated any area of California as in a drought. Even the seasonal forecast does not see drought conditions forming this spring or summer in California.
The latest U.S. Drought Monitor discussion states, “Normal conditions also returned to most of southwestern Arizona to the Salton Sea in southeastern California. The rest of the region in Southern California is still abnormally dry due to very dry previous years.”