drought

YAKIMA, WA - Despite this weekend's rain Yakima County like most of Washington state remains in a drought.

"North Central Washington and Southwestern Washington are looking the worst shape," said Karin Bumbaco, Assistant State Climatologist, University of Washington.

On Monday, Governor Jay Inslee expanded the drought emergency declaration.

Nearly half of the state is now in an emergency drought.

The Department of Ecology has put out a map that shows all the areas impacted, Yakima County is included.

https://ecology.wa.gov/Water-Shorelines/Water-supply/Water-availability/Statewide-conditions/Drought-2019?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery

"So the issue more in Yakima is just that the lack of snow," said Bumbaco.

Bumbaco also says Central Washington received a lot of snow on low ground levels this winter but not on the mountains.

"Our snow pack is what stores our water during the winter in snow so that when it melts in the spring and summer it can be used for water supply and statewide that has been below normal this winter," said Bumbaco.

With summer around the corner Commissioner of Public Lands, Hilary Franz explains what this means for this upcoming fire season.

"We are already seeing that the drought conditions that we've experienced and the low rainfall we had in March and April is playing out for increasing number of fires. Today we've already had 300 fires half of those east side of the state, the other half on the west side of the state," said Franz.

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