An estimated more than 2 million people in Connecticut are now experiencing drought conditions.
The bright orange shading is where the state is experiencing severe drought conditions, while the majority of the rest of the state is either in a moderate drought or abnormally dry. Craig Patla from Connecticut Water said the circumstances now are reminiscent of the 2016 drought.
"The water levels in a lot of the reservoirs across the state were shocking,” said Patla. “To a lot of people and it brought the idea of the drought into a reality."
While some of the impacts are clearly visible, like crunchy lawns and lower water levels, we can’t always see the effect of the lack of rain.
"You can't see it you don't know it but there's an equal impact on the underwater aquafers that may not show itself for months or years later that we have to also keep an eye on to make sure that we're able to meet the demands of the summer,” explained Patla.
And the demands of summer are high. Water usage in the warmer months is one and half or even twice as much compared to the winter months. For drought conditions like this, and even situations like Tropical Storm Isaias just a few weeks ago, all of the water companies across Connecticut have emergency operation plans.
According to Patla, “there are specific triggers whether it's reservoir level or the ability to fill system storage tanks that trick triggers along the way that would call for more strict requests for conservation up to and including mandatory conservation."
And some towns, like Southington, are already calling for those mandatory restrictions. The town is requesting customers limit the amount of outside water use and adhere to odd/even watering. These restrictions allow properties with an even street number to water on even days of the month and the same for properties with odd street numbers to water on odd days of the month.
Other ways to save water include watering in the evening or using drip hoses to limit the amount of water that is evaporated. Inside your home you can utilize energy-efficient appliances, limit time in the shower or bath, and turn the sink off while brushing your teeth and washing your face.
Unfortunately aside from a few showers over the next few days, there’s really no beneficial rain in the extended forecast.