Pennsylvania DEP Elevates Franklin County to Drought Warning, Keeps 13 Others on Drought Watch

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PENNSYLVANIA — The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced on Friday that Franklin County has been moved from a drought watch to a drought warning. The decision came after a meeting of the Commonwealth Drought Task Force.

Franklin County now joins Clinton and York Counties, which continue under a drought warning. Meanwhile, 13 counties remain under a drought watch, including Adams, Bucks, Cameron, Cumberland, Dauphin, Fulton, Huntingdon, Lancaster, Lebanon, Montgomery, Northampton, Perry, and Westmoreland.

The DEP’s move to elevate Franklin County to a drought warning is designed to bolster the efforts of water suppliers and their customers in the region to conserve water. Residents in areas under a drought warning are being asked to reduce their individual water use by 10-15%, equating to a reduction of six to nine gallons of water per day.

The DEP also noted that due to varying localized conditions, water suppliers or municipalities might request residents to undertake more stringent conservation actions.

In line with this, several public water suppliers have implemented mandatory conservation measures. These include the Christiana Borough Authority in Lancaster County, Eagle View Mobile Home Park in Adams County, Gilpin Township Municipal Water Authority in Armstrong County, Hanover Boro Water Dept in York County, and others in Lock Haven City Authority, MAWC Sweeney Plt System, Monroeville Muni Auth, Mont Alto Municipal Authority, Parks Township Municipal Water Authority, Plum Borough Municipal Authority, Rolling Hills Estates, Rote Mutual Water Co, and Suburban Lock Haven Water Auth.

Additionally, a number of public water suppliers are requesting voluntary conservation from their customers. These include Driftwood Boro, Lehigh County Authority NCSA Clearview Farms Division, North Wales Water Auth, NWWA Durham Village Res Assoc, NWWA Ingham Mews Condo Assn, NWWA Olde Colonial Green, NWWA Pine Run Comm, NWWA Warrington Twp, NWWA Yorkshire Meadows, Riegelsville Water Company, The Hermitage Condo Assn, and York Water Co.

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The DEP also offered several tips to Pennsylvania residents on how they can conserve water at home. These include running the dishwasher and washing machine less often and only with full loads, shortening shower times, checking for and repairing household leaks, installing low-flow plumbing fixtures and aerators on faucets, and replacing older appliances with high-efficiency models.

As the state grapples with these drought conditions, the DEP is urging all Pennsylvanians to take these warnings seriously and do their part in conserving water. Each small effort can make a significant difference in ensuring the sustainability of the state’s water resources.

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