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Mitigating Drought



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A new study by water experts in Utah provides a thought provoking look at our drought-prone region, along with extending a timely call to action that Utahns ought to heed. The Division of Water Resources report correctly suggests Utahns can prepare for the future by learning from the past.

What the researchers learned is cause for concern, especially at a time when dramatic growth is increasing the region's demand for water.

Going back 2,000 years, the natural historic record clearly shows this region experienced "more severe" and "more frequent" droughts than during the last 100 years. The report says future droughts will likely be worse and last longer than those of the past century.

Instead of merely "managing" drought, as Utahns have been prone to do, the report appropriately recommends moving toward strategies of "drought mitigation," so there'll be a reliable water supply to meet society's needs.

Some of the broader institutional recommendations will be costly, and at times, controversial, to implement. They need to be debated with clarity. However, the report also suggests individuals can do their part through wiser use of this precious limited resource.

KSL thanks these water experts for their insightful report. Utah's future will be less thirsty if their recommendations can lead to a more ingrained conservation mindset.

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