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Oregon Water Supply Outlook As of May 6; Significant Drought Underway

2:46 AM · May 7, 2021

Our water outlook in Oregon looks drastically different today than it did at the end of March. April yielded almost no rain throughout the state of Oregon and the first half of May is continuing the dry pattern. It's setting Oregon up for a very serious drought heading into summer unless things change. Here is the full report from the National Weather Service: The water supply forecast for the spring and summer of 2021 is below average for almost all rivers in Oregon, except for a few watersheds in far-northeast Oregon, where forecasts are near to a little above average. Dry conditions in March and April have increased concerns about summer drought impacts across most of the state. Streamflow volume forecasts for April-September have dropped 15 to 30 percent compared to a month ago and 30 to 60 percent compared to 2 months ago. Note that water supply forecasts are particularly low for much of south-central Oregon, including Klamath and Lake counties. While not as extreme, forecasts for most western Oregon streams, particularly those draining the coastal mountains, have been reduced drastically compared to 2 months ago. Much of the state is already drought-stressed due to dry conditions for the past 18 months. Note that Governor-declared drought declarations are in effect for Jackson, Klamath, and Lake counties. Based on conditions and seasonal forecasts, there are likely to be significant and widespread drought impacts this summer, including stressed vegetation, increased fire danger, reduced availability of water for irrigation, low streamflow and warm water temperatures which negatively impact fish habitat, and poor rangeland conditions for livestock and wildlife grazing. Refer to the sections below and links provided for details regarding snowpack, precipitation, seasonal climate outlooks, reservoirs, streamflow, and water supply forecasts. The next update to this outlook will be issued by June 4, 2021. For the full Oregon Water Supply Outlook:


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