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Water Year Worse Than Figures Indicate

Water Year Worse Than Figures Indicate

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Utah's precipitation during the water year that ended yesterday was close to normal, but it came at the wrong times to break the drought.

Resource officials say the state got 86 percent of average precipitation, but very little of that made it to reservoirs.

You can blame that on a warmer-than-usual March, which melted away Utah's big snowpack too quickly.

With the ground dried out by previous years of drought, much of the snowmelt just soaked into the earth. Streams barely rose, doing little to replenish the reservoirs, which are at record or near-record lows.

On the plus side, this summer turned out to be normal for precipitation, which could help save runoff next spring.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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