In case you haven't noticed, it has been a while since the southeastern portion of Massachusetts has had significant rainfall. We are not alone, as most of the rest of the state is pretty dry as well.

The Massachusetts Department of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) reports 90 percent of Massachusetts "is now experiencing drought conditions."

State Asks SouthCoast Area To Conserve Water During Drought
Courtesy Mass.gov
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Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Bethany Card said "conditions have deteriorated" enough for her to declare a "Level 2-Significant Drought in the Connecticut River Valley, Central, Northeast, and Southeast Regions, a Level 1-Mild Drought in the Western and Islands Regions, and normal conditions in the Cape Cod Region."

The Department of Energy and Environmental Affairs urges residents in the Level 2 Drought regions, including the Greater New Bedford, Greater Fall River, and Greater Taunton areas, to conserve water.

It has been four months since the region has had significant rainfall.

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"As the summer continues and low precipitation couple with high temperatures, it is incredibly important that outdoor watering be limited, coupled with the planting of drought tolerant plants to further reduce the strain on local water systems," the EEA said.

In Level 2 Significant Drought areas, EEA suggests you "limit outdoor watering to hand-held hoses or watering cans before 9 a.m. or after 5 p.m."

Courtesy Ed Pepin
Courtesy Ed Pepin
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"Water conservation measures will aid in the reduction of water use and safeguard water for essential needs, such as drinking water, fire protection service, habitat recovery and environmental needs, and sustained water supplies," the department said.

Residents are also being urged to use caution when using outdoor grills or fire pits.

“As the drought conditions worsen across parts of the Commonwealth, MEMA reminds residents to exercise caution when using charcoal grills, backyard fire pits, and other open flame outdoor activities to prevent outdoor fires,” said Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) Acting Director Dawn Brantley. “Residents can also assist during the drought by minimizing water usage and following any local water restrictions for their area.”

The Massachusetts Drought Management Task Force continues to monitor the situation and will issue advisories as warranted.

The SouthCoast region experienced drought conditions in 2021 and 2020.

Remembering the Great SouthCoast Flood of 2010

On March 31, 2010, record rainfall resulted in massive flooding and considerable damage in southeastern Massachusetts, with Freetown among the hardest-hit communities. 

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