IRON COUNTY, Utah (ABC4) – With 100% of the state experiencing moderate drought and 90% of the state experiencing extreme drought, Utah Governor Spencer Cox has issued an executive order declaring a local state of emergency in Utah and asking residents to conserve water.
In southern Utah, conditions were recently elevated to “exceptional drought” status. With implications for southern Utah residents, visitors, and recreators, Central Iron County Water Conservancy District, CICWCD, and Washington County Water Conservancy District, WCWCD, are partnering to issue important information about the drought conditions and recommendations as summer approaches.
Utah is not alone in its current drought conditions. Most of the Southwestern United States is in the midst of a major drought, according to the District.
The District says considering the severity of the drought in an already dry, desert climate, coupled with a surge in population growth and tourism, water officials are asking residents to do the three following things this year to help save water:
⦁ Wait to irrigate landscapes until needed
⦁ Fix leaky toilets and faucets
⦁ Take shorter showers
According to the National Integrated Drought Information System, NIDIS, “exceptional drought” is the most serious level of drought.
“Since the NIDIS began publishing the U.S. Drought Monitor in 2000, the “most intense period of drought” has occurred during the week of Jan. 19, 2021, when 66.99% of the state’s lands were affected by “exceptional drought,” as stated in a press release sent to ABC4.
“If each person considers their impact and applies at least one water-wise principle, we can realize significant water savings for the region,” Central Iron County Water Conservancy District General Manager Paul Monroe shares. “Now more than ever, we must work together to optimize every drop of water in southern Utah.”
Programs are available to help those who want to reduce their water consumption. You can even take virtual classes to learn how to use water-smart plants in landscaping and more efficient irrigation set-ups.
“Those interested can also have a more personalized experience by attending the Iron County workshop on March 23 and 30. Sign up at www.cicwcd.org/localscapes,” the press release states.
“We have accomplished significant water savings over the last decade, but we can – and should – do more,” said Zach Renstrom, WCWCD general manager. “Simple efforts, like waiting to irrigate landscapes, fixing leaks, and taking shorter showers will preserve our water supplies and help us through this drought.”