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Drought watch lifted in Warren County

The drought watch that was in effect in Warren County for three months was lifted on Thursday.

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced the lifting of drought status for 20 counties following a meeting of the Commonwealth Drought Task Force. That leaves three counties – Clinton, which had been in a drought warning, Center, and Clearfield – under a watch.

“We’re getting close. Recent rainfall brought good news for many counties,” DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell said. “But three counties have a little ways to go to return to normal conditions. We ask all water consumers on drought watch to remain mindful and continue to reduce their water use a modest amount.”

Warren County was added to a growing list of counties under a drought watch in late September.

“DEP makes drought watch, warning, or emergency declaration recommendations based on four numeric indicators,” according to a DEP release. “The agency gets stream flow and groundwater level data from a statewide network of gauges maintained by the U.S. Geological Survey. In addition, DEP monitors precipitation and soil moisture. DEP also factors in information it receives from public water suppliers.”

“There are normal ranges for all four indicators, and DEP makes its drought status recommendations after assessing the departures from these normal ranges for all indicators for periods of three to 12 months,” according to the release. “Declarations are not based on one indicator alone.”

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