Drought monitoring started in 1999 and is reported on a weekly basis for the entire U.S. This data is an “eyes and ears on the ground” monitoring program that is illustrated through maps made available to the public and scientists for studying drought across the country. Drought slowly creeps up on us. We need to respond to drought as soon as possible. Delayed responses to drought usually generate more pain for a community. Mark’s Drought Monitor program is an effective tool for managing drought.
Steve emphasizes everyone to learn to use less water. We in the U.S. can save a lot of water and still be very comfortable. Rainwater harvesting is a main tool that can help us supplement our groundwater supplies. Australia was very successful in applying rainwater harvesting to specific regions of the country.
The most intensive water use room in the house is the bathroom so install low flow toilets, taps and shower heads (27% of domestic water use). Repair any leaks occurring on your property (1.5% of domestic water use) and reduce your outdoor irrigation (usually half a property’s water use, at least). Lastly, pay attention to your farmers. Our food is the largest part of our water footprint. Pay attention to the issues that farmers are experiencing when producing the essential fruits and vegetables that you eat. California provides an enormous percentage of food to our country and parts of the world. Support their efforts to provide the necessary water in a manner that safeguards the water resources of the region. Responsible growing, responsible stewardship to the natural resource.