What is SoCal doing to collect the El Nino-fueled stormwater?

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Many ABC7 viewers have asked what Southern California officials are doing to collect stormwater from El Nino-fueled rain to help with the drought.

With all the rain this week from El Nino-fueled storms, many people have been asking if Southern California is attempting to collect and store the water to help with the drought.

The answer is yes, but much more rain is needed to help with the drought conditions, according to experts.

At the Rio Hondo Coastal Spreading Grounds, rainwater on its way out to the ocean is being diverted and stored in underground basins.

The spreading grounds have 20 basins over 570 acres and they're all full now.

"This is the first time in four years that we've been full here," Keith Lilley, a civil engineer with the Los Angeles County Public Works said.

But officials said don't expect to be out of the clear of drought conditions just yet, as the region still has much making up to do.

"Well it's a huge start. We're about 9,600 acre-feet of water we've conserved and overnight well get to about 10,000 acre-feet from this storm alone. And that's enough water for about 80,000 people for a year. But we're still a long way from recovering from four years of drought," Lilley explained.

Southern California would need about a dozen more storms like the area saw this week to get the water level back up to even, according to Lilley.

And all of the steps you've been taking to help preserve water. Lilley has a simple message.

"That's going to be a way of life here in Los Angeles County now so keep it up," Lilley said.
Related Topics:
newsel ninoraindroughtfloodingstormwinter stormwater conservationwatercalifornia waterPico RiveraLos Angeles County
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