After receiving a recommendation from the Humboldt County Drought Task Force, the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, July 20, adopted a resolution proclaiming a countywide local emergency due to drought.
The emergency proclamation is the first step in acknowledging the current impacts of drought in Humboldt County and conditions are expected to worsen in the weeks and months to come. This proclamation provides county staff the ability to dedicate personnel and resources towards mitigating some of the immediate negative effects of the drought. County staff will explore ways to provide for the protection of physical and economic health, natural and cultural resources and preparing for subsequent related emergencies.
Impacts of the drought in Humboldt County include:
- Harmful algal blooms in multiple local water systems, making it unsafe for people and animals to recreate under certain conditions
- Historically low flows in both the Eel and Klamath Rivers
- Drought-caused losses to rangeland forage production resulting in economic losses for impacted farmers and ranchers
- Potential reduction in water availability for cities, districts, and other water suppliers who are not served by the Humboldt Bay Municipal Water District
- Severe impacts to local fish populations due to low river flows, habitat fragmentation, warm water temperatures, and increased risk of a fish disease outbreak
- Potential for diminished water availability and decreased water quality in drinking water supplied from private wells and surface water diversions
- Increased risk of extreme wildfire
The Humboldt County Drought Task Force is meeting weekly to research local impacts, mitigation and response strategies as well as potential future policy actions that will help increase resiliency and reduce the impacts of drought in our community.
The Department of Health & Human Services’ Division of Environmental Health (DEH) is seeking information regarding stressed or dry wells. If you are experiencing these conditions, please report them to DEH at: ENVHEALTH@.co.humboldt.ca.us or call 707-445-6215.
Humboldt County Drought Proclamation (PDF)