From Cal Matters – “If you’ve changed the climate and then you try to use statistics — which relies on what happened in the past — to predict the future, you’re already running into an issue,” David Rizzardo, manager of the California Department of Water Resources’ hydrology section, told CalMatters. Flood control, power generation and maintaining water quality for people, ecosystems and threatened and endangered species all rely on the runoff forecasts. Even outdoor enthusiasts benefit from the snowmelt predictions. “We get a lot of calls saying, ‘Hey, you guys must know when the waterfalls in Yosemite are going to be going,’” Rizzardo said. The problem? The forecasts haven’t yet factored in how climate change has altered snowmelt. “Climate change,” Rizzardo said, “has thrown a monkey wrench at all this.” As climate change drives temperatures ever hotter, the snowpack is retreating up mountain sides to higher altitudes and melting earlier in the season. And the wet season is contracting into a shorter, sharper period of storms. (more)