Drought, low snowpack may foretell Idaho’s future

Idaho News
Idaho Statesman Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation Area, Boise, ID. Much of Southern Idaho, cut through in scythe like fashion by the Snake River Plain, relies on the frozen water stored in the state’s mountains to fill its rivers. When winter ends and summer’s broiling heat arrives, it is these snowy peaks that serve as the state’s reservoir, filling the Salmon, Snake, Big Lost, Boise and other tributaries with cold, clear water. But as the amount of snowfall declines, with scientists citing the effects of climate change as a key contributor, major problems arise for the state’s ecosystems, residents and agriculture industry. And that erosion is already underway. By the turn of the century, Idaho could see reductions of 35%-65% of its snowpack, according to a study published in Nature Reviews…
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Idaho Water Supply Committee: Record-dry January, drought outlook ‘grim’

Idaho News
By Meredith Spelbring; East Idaho News TWIN FALLS (KIVI) – After a near “perfect” start to the season, officials with the Idaho Water Supply Committee said a record-dry January and dry forecasts are not ideal for the widespread drought across Idaho. Nearly 50% of Idaho is in drought conditions, with the remaining half of the state approaching drought conditions, according to David Hoekema with the Idaho Department of Water Resources. The fall of 2021 and the beginning of 2022 were “perfect” conditions from a water supply standpoint, but one of the driest 30-day streaks in January is causing concern. “We are getting to a point we are probably going to start recommending an expansion of drought in Idaho if we don’t see the needed precipitation coming in,” said Hoekema. As…
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Idaho Water Resource Board Expands Cloud Seeding

Idaho News
By Brad Carlson, Capital Press The Idaho Water Resource Board at its Sept. 16-17 meeting voted to continue cloud-seeding programs — and to start a new effort this winter in the state’s southeast corner. House Bill 266, which he Legislature passed this year, says the board is responsible for authorizing cloud seeding and may participate in it and hire contractors. HB 266 directs the board to identify additional basins that cloud seeding would benefit, and to work with stakeholders. It limits liability for participating in certain projects and says no state or local permits are required. Cloud seeding has been used in parts of Idaho for years. Upper Snake, Big Wood, Boise and Payette river basins have aircraft- or ground-based iequipment to seed winter storms. The board is continuing its…
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