News Release

COG Lifts Regional Drought "WATCH"

Oct 7, 2010

Washington, D.C. – The drought "WATCH" that was put into effect on September 9, 2010 by the Drought Coordination Committee of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) has been lifted and the region has returned to the NORMAL stage of the Regional Water Supply and Drought Awareness Response Plan. During such drought watch periods, citizen and business efforts to conserve water have helped to reduce demand on the region's water supply systems. Since the WATCH was declared, regional water resource conditions have improved thanks to recent precipitation that resulted in improved stream flow levels throughout the Potomac River basin and to cooler weather that has reduced demands. Please remember, citizens are still being encouraged to use water wisely throughout the entire year.

"We’re thankful that the recent rainfall has allowed us to lift the watch, however, we want to emphasize and encourage the public to use water wisely all year long” said Drought Coordination Committee Chair and Fairfax County Executive Anthony Griffin.  "Using a broom instead of a hose to clean sidewalks and driveways, repairing leaking toilets and faucets, turning off water while brushing your teeth or shaving, and washing full loads in dish and clothes washers are all simple ways to save water - we urge everyone to follow these common-sense guidelines."  Officials will continue to monitor conditions and will take appropriate action should they change.

Overall, the flow in the Potomac River is running above long-term average levels and well above current water supply demands. Water reservoirs constructed in the early 1980s to provide water supply during droughts are also full. Over the past 7 days, the Potomac River Basin received an abundant amount of rain due to Tropical Storm Nicole, ranging from 2 to 12 inches.

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