Updated July 29, 2021
On July 28, 2021, we adopted an emergency rule, Chapter 173-167 WAC Emergency Drought Funding, which establishes funding to help mitigate the most severe human health, fish health, and agricultural emergencies caused by drought conditions negatively affecting:
- The delivery of safe and reliable drinking water supplies.
- The survival of fish and wildlife.
- The viability of agricultural activities and livestock operations.
On July 14, 2021, a drought emergency was declared for much of the state. Visit the Drought 2021
page for information.
As the state's lead agency for water supplies, we pay close attention to multiple data sources and monitor them closely. The Office of the Washington State Climatologist serves as a credible and expert source of climate and weather information for the state. Their monthly newsletter reviews the previous month’s data and provides an outlook for the coming weeks.
June 2021 was full of extremes in Washington. Average temperatures were much above normal — especially east of the Cascades. The month began with a heat wave, causing a daily record high in Omak. Yet this was minor compared to the heat wave that hit later in the month. Temperatures soared across the state from June 25 to 30 due to an unprecedented high pressure system that was both stronger and came earlier than similar systems in the past. Yet at the other end of the spectrum a low pressure system brought low temperatures beginning June 6, as well as precipitation in some areas from June 11 to 15, with daily rainfall records set in Olympia and SeaTac on June 13.
The July issue of the State Climatologists Newsletter contains details, including a list of record-breaking high temperatures around the state, as well as a snowpack and drought summary, and a state climate outlook.
You can join a network of volunteers who help map and track precipitation in the United States and Canada.
The National Drought Mitigation Center and partners have developed Condition Monitoring Observer Reports on Drought (CMOR-drought), a short survey that allows the public to enter their observations regarding crops, water supply, fire, etc.