Drought Causes Warning

Drought Causes Warning

Drought Causes Warning. I'm Greg Martin with today's Fruit Grower Report.

Last Friday, Washington Governor Jay Inslee declared a drought emergency for three regions of the state, two of which encompass prime tree fruit and wine grape growing regions. On Tuesday Oregon Governor Kate Brown declared a drought emergency in two rural Oregon counties, with more expected in the coming weeks, as the state suffers abnormally low snow pack levels. Now we get a forecast from the Department of Ecology predicting dust storms and wildfires in the months ahead. Camille St. Onge, communications manager for the department.

ST. ONGE: That snow pack that we normally have isn't there and the forests are going to be very dry and the burn scars from last year where the wildfires were also set us up for conditions for added dust storms which we call haboobs and then also the dry fields, that loose soil that can get picked up causes this wall of dust and dirt to just come rolling a community and can do damage.

She says they have an important caution for anyone who works outside.

ST. ONGE: Throughout the season we're hoping that if you work outside we want you to carry or have access to a dust mask because when these large dust storms come rolling through there's a huge volume of dirt and dust and other debris that's picked up and it can damage your respiratory system. Particularly if you have asthma or if you have small children as well.

That's today's Fruit Grower Report. I'm Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network of the West.

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