Summer water might be below normal - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Summer water might be below normal

SPOKANE, Wash. - It may still be cold and wet across the state, but it appears there won't be enough water stored to prevent shortages this summer.
     
The federal Natural Resources Conservation Service is predicting that Washington's stream flows will be below average this summer, but only moderately below.
     
That could change if there is little snow or accelerated snowmelt in the remaining month of the snow season.
     
According to a March 1 prediction, stream flow forecasts range from 60 percent of normal for the Okanogan area to 98 percent of average on the Green River. The only river basin in the state with snowpack totals significantly above normal is the Tolt at 125 percent.

Slightly below normal doesn't mean a drought. The Department of Agriculture says we should get a better idea of snow totals and precipitation totals as we move into spring and early summer and closer to the first part of April in a few weeks.

Knowing the snowpack now helps farmers decide which crops to plant and helps utilities manage waterflow over dams.

(The Associated Press contributed to this story.)

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