California residents are understandably concerned about the worsening drought, but those not living there may not fully comprehend how bad things really are. One Californian created a video to help illustrate the effects, capturing the receding water line at a popular summertime recreational spot. The time lapse video, composed with clips collected at the reservoir over a four-month period, makes it clear that the drought is not only real, but devastating to the state’s environment as well as its people.
Ryan Griffith collected footage from the marina at Brown’s Ravine at Folsom Lake, which is about 25 miles east of Sacramento, between April 2015 and August 2015. He composed a time lapse video of the clips, which fit together like puzzle pieces, revealing the stark reality for this and many other bodies of water in the coastal state. The short video begins unassumingly, speeding through scenes of lakeside fun, and the shifting water line is noticeable but not initially dramatic. The last few moments of the video are incredibly impactful, though, as you see the lake literally disappearing before your eyes as the water recedes until the docks are completely beached and the sand appears dry.
Like many lakes in California, Folsom Lake is a reservoir, so its water levels are expected to fluctuate through the seasons. Rainwater collects in the reservoir, and some water is lost to evaporation in the hottest months of the year. However, the water level at Folsom Lake has almost never been this low. California’s Department of Water Resources reports that the lake is currently holding just 18 percent of its capacity, which is less than one-third the amount of water usually found in the lake at this time of the year.
The years-long drought has been made worse by global warming, according to recent studies, and there is no end in sight. It’s possible that the expected El Niño event could take some of the edge off this winter, but it’s not likely to protect the state in the long run, as climate change continues to plague the planet.
Via USA Today
Video via Ryan Griffith, image via Folsom Lake Marina