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Lake Tahoe Getting Lower

Three dry winters are taking a toll on the level of Lake Tahoe. Federal Watermaster Garry Stone says the lake is 18-inches lower than it was at this time a year ago. A low water level could affect how water flows into the Truckee in Tahoe City.

Researchers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, say the state could see warmer temperatures and a smaller snowpack this century because of global warming. The change could diminish water supplies in a state already familiar with drought. The researchers found that in 50 years, the San Francisco Bay area could see an average temperature increase of three to four degrees Fahrenheit over current norms. The Los Angeles area could see an increase of five to six degrees Fahrenheit.

In the Sierra Nevada, that increase could be even higher — as much as 15 degrees Fahrenheit in May. The study also shows snowpack could decrease by half in the next 50 years. Snowpack acts as a reservoir for the state´s water, so the decline could affect California´s water supply.