Crop losses, financial challenges in Sanpete County, Utah

5 days 14 hours ago
A Sanpete County farmer reported that water supplies were very low, only allowing him to run 20 percent of his farm for half of a day. He was forced to abandon about 70 percent of his farm. The drought and lack of water was creating financial challenges and causing crop losses. KSTU-TV Fox 13 Now Salt Lake City (Utah), Oct. 16, 2018

Dry conditions intensify fire season in San Diego County, California

5 days 15 hours ago
CAL FIRE San Diego has battled 415 wildfires so far in 2018, while they typically fight between 220 and 250 fires annually. The peak fire season with Santa Ana winds has not yet begun, indicating a much more severe fire season than normal as dry conditions persist. KFMB-TV CBS 8 San Diego (Calif.), Oct. 16, 2018

Historically dry fuel conditions in San Diego County, California

5 days 15 hours ago
Historically dry fuel conditions have San Diego County area fire chiefs getting ready for a potentially severe peak fire season. Live fuel moisture levels indicated that plants contained just 43 percent of full moisture, the lowest recorded live fuel moisture readings ever taken in the county in more than 100 years of data. Readings below 60 percent indicate the potential for critical fire behavior. KFMB-TV CBS 8 San Diego (Calif.), Oct. 16, 2018

Delayed start to backyard burn season in Clackamas, Oregon

5 days 16 hours ago
Clackamas fire officials announced a delay to the start of the backyard burn season until a significant amount of rain falls. The fire danger was too high, due to dry conditions and a lack of rain. KATU-TV ABC 2 Portland (Ore.), Oct. 15, 2018

Public water station closed in Divide, Colorado

6 days 9 hours ago
The public water station in Divide closed in May, mainly due to drought and augmentation requirements when stream flows are low, according to Bryan Johnson, executive vice president of Divide Water Providers. The Colorado Springs Gazette (Colo.), Oct. 8, 2018

Drought emergency in Utah

6 days 9 hours ago
Gov. Gary Herbert declared a drought emergency for the entire state of Utah as drought was at or nearing historic levels. Drought was most intense in San Juan County in the southeast corner of the state, and six counties declared drought disasters. “Such difficult conditions are harming the quality of life and the livelihoods of many Utah families and agricultural producers,” Herbert said. “The ramifications of drought extend beyond our depleted water supply. Drought harms our industries, agriculture, recreation and wildlife, and it worsens wildfire conditions and air quality.” Some farmers were not able to harvest alfalfa, while some ranchers had to sell livestock at a loss, according to Agriculture and Food Commissioner LuAnn Adams. State officials were imploring residents to conserve water by cutting shower times and only running appliances with full loads, as 16 of the state’s major reservoirs held less than 20 percent of their capacity. The water year ending Sept. 30 was the Beehive State’s driest since 1895 when record keeping began, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. It was also the state’s second warmest year on record, increasing evaporation and depleting water supplies. Salt Lake Tribune (Utah), Oct. 15, 2018

High nitrate levels in some baled cornstalks in Missouri

1 week 3 days ago
Missouri farmers were warned to test baled cornstalks before feeding them to cattle because the droughty summer may have left them high in nitrates, according to University of Missouri Extension livestock specialist Gene Schmitz. Some stalks contained nearly four times the acceptable level of nitrates. Warrensburg Daily Star-Journal (Mo.), Oct. 11, 2018

First ever call on Yampa River in northwest Colorado

1 week 3 days ago
The first ever call on the Yampa River ended the first week of October as demand and evaporative and transpiration losses abated. The river’s call originally occurred on Aug. 22, with water rights since 1951 being ordered to end diversions until senior water rights holders had been satisfied. The call was delayed until Sept. 4 to see if water releases improved river flows at Dinosaur National Monument. Mountain Town News (Arvada, Colo.), Oct. 10, 2018

Railroad facilities visible in Lake Dillon in Colorado

1 week 3 days ago
The remains of railroad facilities at Dickey have emerged from the receding waters of Lake Dillon in Summit County. Some of the visible artifacts were building foundations, pieces of bottles, rail spikes, connectors, coal chunks and the cement foundation of the water tower. Summit Daily News (Breckenridge-Dillon) (Colo.), Oct. 11, 2018

Water hauling, conservation requested in some Vermont communities

1 week 3 days ago
Water supplies continued to suffer in Vermont, with the communities of East Berkshire, Franklin and Smuggler’s Notch hauling water for public supplies. Meanwhile, citizens of Jeffersonville, Newbury and Waterville were asked to conserve. VT Digger.org (Montpelier, Vt.), Oct. 11, 2018

No water for growing cotton in Pinal County, Arizona

1 week 4 days ago
Cotton farmers near Eleven Mile Corner in Pinal County were allotted no water this year from the San Carlos Irrigation and Drainage District. The district’s San Carlos Lake, which is fed by the Gila River, has been dry since June. Pinal Central (Ariz.), Oct. 9, 2018

Agreement on Colorado River Plan

1 week 4 days ago
Seven Southwestern states reached agreements on management of the Colorado River Basin as the region endured drought. California also agreed to water cuts earlier than legally required. The Upper Basin states will try to keep the level of Lake Powell at or above 3,525 feet above sea level, and the Lower Basin states will attempt to conserve more water. If Lake Mead falls below a certain level, Arizona will curb its water use by up to 9 percent, California by as much as 8 percent and Nevada by 3 percent. The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation foresees the chances of a shortfall in Lake Mead at 57 percent by 2020. Casper Star-Tribune (Wyo.), Oct. 11, 2018

Utahns asked to end lawn watering for the year

1 week 4 days ago
The Utah Division of Water Resources urged Utahns to stop lawn watering for the remainder of the year to conserve water. At present, 16 of Utah’s reservoirs were below 20 percent of capacity, and eight of those held less than 5 percent. KUSU-FM Utah Public Radio (Logan, Utah), Oct. 8, 2018

Bee hive lost, honey production low in McLennan County, Texas

1 week 4 days ago
McLennan County beekeepers reported numerous lost hives and a reduction in honey production of up to 74 percent, after a historically dry summer. Because nectar and pollen were scarce, bees could not make honey and consumed what they had. Waco Tribune-Herald (Texas), Oct. 6, 2018

Water restrictions in Mancos, Colorado

1 week 4 days ago
Outdoor water use restrictions took effect in Mancos in preparation for potential water shortages later in the year. Outdoor watering may be done on certain days, depending on one’s address. Montezuma County was in exceptional drought conditions, due to low snowpack in the San Juan Mountains during the previous winter and abnormally hot, dry weather during the spring. Several reservoirs and rivers in the county were low. Cortez Journal (Colo.), June 28, 2018

Water restrictions in New Braunfels, Texas

1 week 5 days ago
New Braunfels' water restrictions ended on Oct. 10 after several days of rain. Community Impact - Austin (Texas), Oct. 10, 2018 Stage 1 water restrictions took effect in New Braunfels after the water level of the Edwards Aquifer fell below 660 feet. “Due to insufficient rains and rising temperatures as well as an increased demand on the water supply, the levels of the Edwards aquifer began falling at a rate of 1/2 foot to 1 foot per day,” said Ian Taylor, CEO for New Braunfels Utilities. “The aquifer has been at or below 660 feet for 24 hours, which triggers stage 1 watering restrictions for NBU customers and New Braunfels.” Community Impact - Austin (Texas), May 18, 2018

Water restrictions in Carbondale, Colorado

1 week 5 days ago
Water restrictions in Carbondale ended on Oct. 15. The town ditches were also turned off and stopped flowing. Glenwood Springs Post Independent (Colo.), Oct. 10, 2018 Carbondale enacted water restrictions on July 30 with the expectation that Crystal River levels would continue their decline, which would lower ditch flows. KDNK-FM Community Radio (Carbondale, Colo.), Aug. 6. 2018
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