Washington Governor Declares Emergency Drought For Certain Regio - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Washington Governor Declares Emergency Drought For Certain Regions

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 YAKIMA, WA.- This morning, Governor Jay Inslee declared a drought emergency for several regions in the state, including the Yakima Basin and Walla Walla.

The declaration makes it easier for the state to provide emergency relief for agriculture and communities.

Snowpack conditions across Washington State are at a record low this year, but this drought could hit the Yakima, Wenatchee, and Walla Walla regions the hardest.

The unusually warm winter we've experienced has meant more rain in the Cascade Mountains, instead of snow and snowpack levels are about half of what they normally are.

Snowpacks are what help to feed wildlife and irrigate local farms during the dry, summer season.

The State Department of Ecology told us people will have to conserve water this summer and carefully watch how they use their water.

“In particular during times of drought if we can move to water our lawns every other day and some simple water conservation measures can go along way to help preserve and protect our water supply,” Tom Tebb with the Washington Department of Ecology said.

On average, statewide snowpacks are projected at 27 percent lower than normal.

The Department of Ecology has requested nine million in drought relief from the legislature.
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