Half of US West out of drought, but not fully recovered

DENVER (AP) — Scientists say nearly half of the American West has emerged from drought following a winter marked by heavy snow and several massive rainstorms. The robust precipitation hasn’t entirely replenished the region. But all that rain and snow means California can provide 100% of the water requested by cities and farms for the first time in years. Some of the excess water has also been diverted to farmland as a way to replenish groundwater by letting it slowly percolate into the ground. Snow melt has been slow so far, and if that continues it would help reduce danger of flooding and delay onset of the worst wildfire danger.