Washington had a pretty good ski season with a nice, steady dump of snow, but that snowpack has disappeared rapidly in this spring’s warmth. Water from melting snow will be in short supply this summer to power dams, help irrigate crops and keep streams and rivers at levels and temperatures that sustain fish runs. Gov. Jay Inslee declared this week that nearly half of the state is heading into a serious drought.

The unusually dry summer could well bring even more wildfires than last year, which means more smoke fogging our sunny skies and choking sensitive lungs. It would be nice to think this year is an aberration, but the reality is that more frequent droughts will be a new normal for the Evergreen State as the effects of climate change become more pronounced. Breathe in the fresh air while you still can.

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