Drought Conditions are Worsening: NHDES Urges the Public to Look for Ways to Conserve Water, to Report Water Shortages and Economic Impacts
Concord, NH - On October 20, 2016, the NH Drought Management Team (DMT) coordinated by the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NHDES), met to discuss current drought conditions. Mary Stampone, NH State Climatologist, provided some good and bad news. In accordance with the National Drought Monitor, drought conditions are worsening in areas and spreading. Currently approximately 20% of the state is experiencing abnormally dry conditions and 80% of the state is experiencing moderate to extreme drought conditions. The current U.S. Seasonal Drought Outlook indicates little improvement in the southern portion of the state, but potential for improvement in the north by the end of January.
“Unfortunately, for many, drought relief cannot come soon enough. At this point we know hundreds of private wells in New Hampshire have experienced water supply issues due to the drought and we expect to see more” said Brandon Kernen, NHDES Hydrology and Water Conservation and Water Use Program Manager. “It is imperative that those in drought areas refrain from using water outdoors and abide by local outdoor water use restrictions, as well as conserve indoors. Looking for easy ways to save water indoors is not always obvious, but fixing household leaks and replacing old water wasting fixtures, such as showerheads, is a simple way for a family to save water, energy, and money on utility bills.”
More information on how to determine if your fixtures are wasting water and how to use the WaterSense label to identify high performing water fixtures may be found by going to www.nhisforwater.org
NHDES has asked homeowners on private wells, as well as industrial, commercial, institutional, and agricultural water users dependent on private sources to report water shortage issues and related economic/financial impacts by filling out an online survey. Go to www.des.nh.gov and click on the “Drought Information” icon to access the surveys and current information on the drought.