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John Wheeler, WDAY, Published July 10 2012

Weather Talk: Long-term drought would strain local water supplies

A question came into the Weather Center this week regarding water use: Is there any reason to conserve water when there always seems to be plenty?

Actually, there is not always plenty of water. Local water supplies, including the Red River, tend to get very meager during times of drought, such as back in the 1980s. And because the local population has increased greatly since then, it is a certainty that the next long-term drought will put a tremendous strain on our water supply, such that rather severe restrictions will likely be put in place.

The efforts to bring water eastward from Lake Sakakawea have been overshadowed by the concern for flood protection. That being said, as long as the rivers are full and everyone honors the odd-even lawn-watering restrictions, there is very little need to feel too guilty about watering your lawn and doing your laundry, provided you pay your water bill on time.

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