SALT LAKE CITY, Utah.— Gov. Spencer J. Cox just announced an executive order declaring a state of emergency due to drought conditions. 100% of Utah is in a drought.
According to the Utah Division of Water Resources Facebook page, This winter’s snowpack (about 70% of average) hasn’t provided enough to offset the record dry conditions the state experienced last summer and fall.
For snowpack to reach average, Utah’s mountains would need to receive the remaining 30% before existing snowpack starts to melt significantly, typically the first week in April. There is only around a 10% chance of this occurring.
Utah’s current soil moisture is at an all-time low, creating for more dry land conditions. Dry soils reduce the effectiveness of any precipitation Utah receives because the ground will soak it up first and reduce the runoff that typically fills reservoirs, lakes, and streams.