Are We Still in a Drought?

Published: 05/22/2019


After an exceptionally wet winter, with large amounts of local precipitation and an above-average Sierra Nevada snowpack, California is now drought-free. For the first time since 2011, California has returned to almost entirely normal conditions and is no longer suffering from prolonged drought.

*US. Drought Monitor Map Comparison,
March 2014 and March 2019



D0 Abnormally Dry

D1 Moderate Drought

D2 Severe Drought

D3 Extreme Drought

D1 Exceptional Drought


While reservoirs, lakes and groundwater basins are being replenished to alleviate dry conditions across the state, our local water sources, all of which come from local groundwater basins, may take years to replenish and erase the deficits from nearly two decades of drought. Riverside Public Utilities (RPU) encourages customers to always use water wisely and efficiently.


  • Apply potable (drinking) water to outdoor landscapes that might cause significant runoff.
  • Use a hose that dispenses potable water to wash vehicles, except when fitted with a shut-off nozzle.
  • Apply potable water to outdoor landscapes during and within 48 hours after rainfall.


When it comes to using water efficiently, small adjustments can have a big impact. RPU offers a variety of rebates to assist customers to reduce their water usage and save on their water bill, including turf replacement, weather-based irrigation controllers, rotating sprinkler nozzles, rain barrels and soil moisture sensor systems.


Riverside Public Utilities