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2020 DEP Drought Declaration - Update

As of February 4, 2021, Centre County is no longer under a drought watch.

Centre County is under a drought watch. 

Please conserve water use by at least 5%-10%.  Below are some voluntary conservation measures.

There are many ways to reduce water use around the house and yard, including: 
• Run water only when necessary. Don't let the faucet run while brushing your teeth or shaving. Shorten the time you let the water run to warm up before showering. Use a bucket to catch the water and reuse it to water your plants.
• Run the dishwasher and washing machine only with full loads.
• When watering your garden, be efficient and effective: Water in the evening or morning, and direct the water to the ground at the base of the plant, so you don't waste water through evaporation.
• Water your lawn sparingly and only if necessary. Over-watering is wasteful, encourages fungal growth, and results in shallow, compacted root systems that are more susceptible to drought. • Re-use old water from bird baths, vases, or pet bowls to water plants.
• When mowing your lawn, set the blades to 2-3 inches high. Longer grass shades the soil, improving moisture retention. It also grows thicker and develops a deeper root system, so it can better survive drought.
• Check for household leaks. For example, a leaking toilet can waste up to 200 gallons of water daily. • Sweep your sidewalk, deck, or driveway, rather than hosing it off. • Replace older appliances with high-efficiency, front-loading models that use about 30 percent less water and 40-50 percent less energy. • Install low-flow plumbing fixtures and aerators on faucets. 
     Find more tips for indoor and outdoor water saving at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
     DEP makes drought watch, warning, or emergency declaration recommendations based on four numeric indicators. The agency gets stream flow and groundwater level data from a statewide network of gauges maintained by the U.S. Geological Survey. In addition, DEP monitors precipitation and soil moisture. DEP also factors in information it receives from public water suppliers. 
     There are normal ranges for all four indicators, and DEP makes its drought status recommendations after assessing the departures from these normal ranges for all indicators for periods of 3-12 months. Declarations are not based on one indicator alone. 
The above information was provided from the Water Utility Council of the PA-Section, American Water Works Association newsletter.
DEP Drought Information- Find more drought information and a Pennsylvania map showing the most current drought status.