Utah Drought

Governor Spencer Cox says he will allow Utah’s state of emergency for the ongoing drought to expire at the end of the month, since the legislature declined to take any action to renew it.

Aimee Van Tatenhove

As the Great Salt Lake continues to decline, not only is wildlife is being impacted around the lake, but across the region.

Urvish Prajapati


 

The water levels of the Great Salt Lake have dipped to troublingly low levels this August – lower than any in recorded history. But what does this mean for the people and wildlife that call Utah home? (Part 1 of 2)

The Utah’s Department of National Resources reports that most of Utah is in either the extreme or exceptional drought category. According to the Utah Division of Water Resources, one way Utahns can help reduce their water usage by investing in smart sprinkler systems.

Recent storms have helped improve the soil, but haven't made a significant difference in Utah’s reservoirs. 

Officials from Utah’s Division of Water Resources say although the state has been getting monsoonal moisture, the state’s reservoirs have not been significantly impacted.

As reservoir levels continue to drop along the Wasatch Front, everyone has been asked to help by taking shorter showers, watering their lawns less and stop wasting water.

The dust storm that blinded drivers on I-15 in Millard County Sunday was the second deadliest storm since the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration started tracking such weather events in 1950. The dust storm killed eight people in a multi-car pileup.

On Wednesday the Utah Division of Wildlife updated Utah's fishing regulations to allow anglers to catch and keep more fish in bodies of water across the state. 

Is it possible for another big dust storm, like the one that led to the deaths of eight people on Sunday, to happen again in Utah? University of Utah professor Dr. Kevin Perry says it’s likely because dust storms are “becoming more common.”

At least two fires in Northern Utah are confirmed to have been started by fireworks on Pioneer Day. These fires come as most of the state struggles with extreme drought conditions.

Logan Issues Q&A On Current Water Situation

Jul 23, 2021

With drought conditions persisting in Cache Valley, the Logan city water department on Thursday issued the following question-and-answer for local residents on water conservation and the prospect of restrictions this summer:

Caring For Your Yard During A Drought

Jul 20, 2021
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During one of the most intense summers in recent years, record breaking temperatures are being reported throughout the nation. Portland, Oregon's public transportation was partially suspended and photos of melted power cables surfaced on Twitter.

The record high temperatures in Utah have more people than normal heading to emergency rooms seeking relief from the heat.

Extreme drought conditions across Utah have combined with smoke from western wildfires in California, Idaho, Washington and Oregon to create unhealthy air quality.

Glen/Adobe Stock

An unprecedented heat wave and fears of another severe wildfire season have put the warming climate at center stage in the Northwest.

It appears Utahns heeded firework warnings and decided to skip on personal fireworks for this Fourth of July weekend. State officials reported no major wildfires over the long weekend and Governor Spencer Cox’s office says they are “grateful” for that.

Salt Lake Community College is one of many organizations in the state working to conserve water due to the drought and has managed to reduce their water use by 31% so far.

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With the state of Utah facing an extreme drought, this Fourth of July personal fireworks are banned in some areas and heavily discouraged statewide. 

More details are being shared about conversations between President Biden, Utah governor Spencer Cox and other western governors to discuss climate change, drought and resources on how to better fight wildfires.

Gov. Cox and over 30 Utah city mayors, council members and other local leaders asked Utahns to attend public celebrations sponsored by Utah communities this July, instead of using personal fireworks.

As Utah’s drought emergency continues, state officials are looking at the potential of water shortages that could lead to rationing.

Brigham City fire officials are looking for a suspect they say used fireworks to purposely ignite a grass fire in Perry.

Firework stands all over Utah are opening up to their first customers as the Fourth of July and Pioneer Day holidays approach. Matt Shadle, a fireworks professional and the owner of Mad Matt’s, told FOX 13 that this year’s sales are on par with last year’s. Shadle says “things are about on track,” despite warnings from state officials to stay away from fireworks this year because of Utah’s extreme drought conditions.

Utah lawmakers are planning to take another look at the state’s fireworks law as some cities complain it's not clear enough.

Utah Governor Spencer Cox appeared on FOX 13 Live Wednesday night to discuss how Utah is handling the current drought conditions, and he says Utah has “to conserve water better.”

Personal fireworks and open fireworks will not be allowed within Salt Lake City limits until further notice, Mayor Erin Mendenhall announced Tuesday.

In an effort to remind shareholders and consumers to conserve water during Utah’s exceptional drought, a small water company is drastically raising rates for the biggest users. Eden Water Works implemented a 400% rate hike for shareholders who use more than 20,000 gallons of water.

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Localscaping, or landscaping with local plants and soils to match the climate you live in, can help conserve water and support local habitats. Utah State University has joined this effort with drought-tolerant landscaping.

naufalmq/Adobe Stock

Extreme drought has brought abnormally high temperatures across the Western states this week, and normally temperate Utah has not escaped the sizzling heat.

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