High temps blamed for record-low snowpack levels

Posted at 2:31 PM, Oct 31, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-31 16:55:20-04

The far western United States set records for low snowpack levels last year -- and a new report blames high temperatures, rather than low precipitation levels.

The new study suggests greenhouse gasses were a major contributor to the high temperatures. The study was published Monday in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.

Scientists looked at snow measurement sites in California, Oregon, Washington, western Nevada and western Idaho. They found that in 2015, more than 80 percent of those sites experienced record low snowpack levels as a result of much warmer-than-average temperatures.

Most of the previous records were set in 1977.

The snow drought led the governors of California, Oregon and Washington to order reductions in water use.

(by Associated Press)