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Washington Declares Statewide Drought Emergency

With snowpack down to 16 percent of normal levels, Washington officials are bracing for drought.
May 20, 2015, 12pm PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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"Washington Gov. Jay Inslee declared a statewide drought Friday — citing historically low snowpack, dwindling rivers and rising temperatures that have plunged nearly the entire West Coast into official emergency status," reports Maria L. La Ganga.

La Ganga notes the peculiarity of this drought, which could dramatic have dramatic effects even as rain continues to fall on Pacific Northwest, as is typical of the region: "This is a snowpack drought, not a rain drought, and it's expected to hit rural Washington hardest. The state Department of Agriculture predicts $1.2 billion in crop losses. Wildlife officials are scrambling to figure out how to save the salmon. Firefighters are poised for disaster."

The news from Washington follows a, April drought emergency announcement in Oregon, encompassing two-thirds of the state, by Governor Kate Brown. Lake Mead, on the border of Arizona and Nevada, also made news in April, when it's water level set a record low

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Published on Friday, May 15, 2015 in Los Angeles Times
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