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The Scoop

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Indiana lifts water shortage warning

Renews call for voluntary conservation measures

Statement as issued Thursday:

INDIANAPOLIS – A multi-agency water shortage committee led by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the Indiana Department of Homeland Security (IDHS) on Monday lifted the statewide water shortage warning that has been in place since July. The committee is, however, maintaining a watch level status as a way of encouraging citizens to continue conservation measures that will help recharge water supplies.

After enduring historic drought conditions all summer and the driest July in state history, most areas of Indiana received normal or above normal rainfall in August and September.

According to National Weather Service reports, while increased precipitation has improved present conditions, it has not offset widespread crop damage or returned many water supply reservoirs or underground aquifers to normal levels.

Consequently, the state will remain at watch level for the near future and increased monitoring of climatic, hydrologic, and water supply conditions throughout the state will continue.

The conservation goal is to reduce water use by 5 percent at the watch level by instituting a variety of voluntary actions.

Domestic water users, essential services, public water supply systems, industrial and commercial operations, institutions (schools, colleges, nursing homes, correctional facilities), irrigators, and livestock and poultry operations are all encouraged to participate by adopting voluntary conservation measures that will help achieve the goal.

The public is encouraged to maintain the following voluntary water conservation measures:

• Inside and outside aesthetic uses of water (i.e. lawn watering) should be voluntarily reduced.

• Water used for washing and/or flushing streets, driveways, and other impervious areas should be voluntarily reduced.

• Water used for recreation should be voluntarily reduced.

• Water used for outside pressure cleaning should be voluntarily reduced.

• The use of water for automobile and other mobile equipment washing, including boats and trailers, should be voluntarily reduced.

• The use of water for cooling and air conditioning should be voluntarily reduced.

The following voluntary industrial, commercial, institutional and irrigation conservation measures are also encouraged:

• Recycled water should be voluntarily used wherever possible to reduce freshwater use.

• Water use should be voluntarily reduced by implementing water conservation techniques.

• Large institutions (such as schools, colleges, nursing homes, and correctional facilities) should reduce outside uses, implement leak reduction measures, and undertake installation of water saving plumbing devices.

• Current use of irrigation water should be voluntarily reduced by 5 percent whenever possible and managed to reduce freshwater consumptive use. Drip or trickle irrigation systems should be used where possible.

• Water used for washing and/or flushing streets, driveways, and other impervious areas should be voluntarily reduced, unless necessary to protect public health and safety.

• Water used for outside pressure cleaning should be voluntarily reduced.

A complete list of recommended actions in the Water Shortage Plan can be found at www.in.gov/dnr/water/files/watshplan.pdf.

DNR and IDHS work with the Indiana Department of Environmental Management, Indiana Department of Agriculture, Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, and the National Weather Service to implement the Water Shortage Plan.

Send items for The Scoop to jgnews@jg.net.

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