Drought Emergency Declared in WA State
All but two Washington State counties will come under this umbrella of a state of emergency due to drought.
The only exempt areas are metro Seattle, Tacoma and Everett, parts of King County.
Gov. Inslee declared a state of emergency due to dry conditions during his press conference Wednesday afternoon.
According to state officials, the drought means water supplies will be at only 75% of normal levels or lower. Water users, said Inslee, could be at risk of undue "hardship." It's presumed these users include mainly agricultural and other food-producing industries that require water.
There could be actions by the Department of Ecology (DOE) that include emergency drought permits, temporary transfers of water rights to assist stricken areas, and other means of supplying water.
The DOE has released previous information indicating this year was expected to be very dry, and the recent heatwave with record-setting temps wiped out a lot of snowpack in the mountains that are normally used to help feed irrigation and other water systems.
Inslee did not specifically mention any measures involving rationing or cutbacks to irrigation districts. It is not known yet if these will materialize.
Several 'guest' speakers during Inslee's press conference blamed the drought on climate change and global warming.
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