Drought image

2010 Drought

Last revised: October 1, 2015

Historic drought keeps grip on state; preparations begin now for second year of drought as low snowpack is forecast in 2016

Despite recent rains and some boost for stream flows, extreme drought still covers two-thirds of  Washington state.

  • Washington Drought 2015 - Media Briefing Photos in Flickr 09/24/2015
    • The drought’s biggest impacts have been to farming and fish habitat but more recently cities and towns have turned to voluntary or mandatory water use restrictions to save water through the winter.
    • As the irrigation season comes to an end, crop losses are reported statewide and orchards are languishing in some areas producing low yields and smaller fruit.
    • El Nino is forecast to bring higher than normal temperatures and below normal snowpack through the winter requiring drought response preparations to begin now for 2016.
  • Washington's historic drought not over yet, Drought predicted to extend into second year - 09/24/2105 Ecology News Release

Current Conditions:

Drought Response:

Ecology is authorized to issue emergency drought permits. Contact the closest regional office

Issues and drought relief work in Ecology’s four regions:

  • Central Region (Benton, Chelan, Douglas, Kittitas, Klickitat, Okanogan and Yakima counties)
  • Eastern Region (Adams, Asotin, Columbia, Ferry, Franklin, Garfield, Grant, Lincoln, Pend Oreille, Spokane, Stevens, Walla Walla and Whitman counties)
  • Updated! Northwest Region (Island, King, Kitsap, San Juan, Skagit, Snohomish and Whatcom counties)
  • Southwest Region (Clallam, Clark, Cowlitz, Grays Harbor, Jefferson, Mason, Lewis, Pacific, Pierce, Skamania, Thurston and Wahkiakum counties)

Additional drought response information for:

Drought Relief Grant Application and Application Status





Drought Monitor Map

Comparison of Streamflow Maps


Link to Drought Storymap


Link to Drought Photos