Runoff from the Sierra Nevada, a critical source of California’s water supply, could be enhanced by thinning forests to historical conditions, according to a report from a team of scientists with UC Merced, UC Berkeley and the Environmental Defense Fund.
The team proposes to test the hypothesis that forest-management strategies that use thinning to reduce fire risk and maintain the historical mix can also increase water yield and extend the snowpack in the Sierra Nevada.
The scientists suggest that by selectively reducing the number of trees — which use large amounts of the water received through precipitation — the amount of water that is released from the forest as runoff could increase. This enhanced runoff could make things easier for farmers and water managers statewide.
Welcome to the news blog of the University of California, Merced. We aim to be a useful tool for journalists covering our campus as well as members of the public who want to stay informed about our growth and accomplishments.
We keep comments on our posts closed, but your e-mail feedback is welcomed at firstname.lastname@example.org While we may not be able to respond to all correspondence, we pledge that it will all be read and considered.