Iowa Water Situation Better Than Fall

(Radio Iowa) The DNR expert who keeps tabs of water flow levels in the state says March was dry, but overall we are heading into spring in good shape. Tim Hall says snow and rain have help cut down some dry areas.

“It sets us in a much better position than we thought we might be coming out of last fall. Typically, we don’t see a lot of moisture in the wintertime, but we had a lot of moisture in December, January, February,” he says. “We were a little bit short for March, but it doesn’t put us in too bad of shape going into the growing season.” Iowa’s new Drought Plan lists the state in a “Drought Watch,” which Hall says is a signal to keep a close eye on what’s happening.

“And what that really means is could have a wet April and the watch could go away and we could go back to normal,” Hall says. “We can have a dry April, and then we’d have to look at what would happen to those conditions. So it kind of puts us on the edge.” He says there are still some dry areas in the state, but things are much better thanks to those wetter months.

“And what we have to watch carefully is the supply side of water. And hopefully, if we get normal to just slightly above normal rainfall in April, I think we’ll be okay,” he says. But if March was the start of a string of dry months, then we could be in a more challenging situation.” Hall says the improvement is not a signal we have enough water not to worry about it.

“There’s a difference between being smart about how we use water and sort of these extreme conservation measures. And as we’re into normal conditions across much of the state –that’s not a that’s not a call to start wasting water,” Hall says. “Be careful with what you do. And, and, you know, certainly people like their green lawns, but let’s just not get carried away. Fix your faucets that leak, fix your toilets that leak, you know, those are just generally responsible things to do with water.” He says we should try to not waster water whether we are in a drought situation, or have normal levels.