Dry conditions persist, borough reissues mandatory water restriction


August 8, 2019

The borough re-issued mandatory water restrictions this week amid drought conditions and as Lily Lake water levels continue to drop.

In anticipation of more dry weather in August, the borough has banned watering lawns with sprinklers. Hand-drip irrigation of vegetable and flower gardens is allowed.

“The low lake level is a cause for concern, and we are looking for a long-term solution to prevent this issue in the future,” said Haines water plant supervisor Dennis Durr in an email. The borough relies on Lily Lake for 80 percent of its water consumption. “The restriction was effective the last time we put the notice up, and water consumption did drop noticeably,” Durr said.

The borough has not sold water to cruise ships since July 1, and estimates a loss in revenue of between $10,000 and $15,000, Durr said.

Since the end of July, the U.S. Drought Monitor, a national drought monitoring tool, has indicated that north Southeast is experiencing a moderate drought, while other parts of the region are experiencing severe and extreme drought. This year for the first time the wettest part of Alaska, southern Southeast, was declared in extreme drought. Worldwide, meteorologists declared last month the hottest on record.


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