Even though this winter left a dismal snow pack in the mountains and we hear news about areas around the nation with dry wells as the result of droughts, the expected water supply forecast for Ferndale is quite positive.
Ferndale’s water supply is drawn from two nearby wells. According to information provided by City staff, “The primary source of recharge to the aquifer is the long-term infiltration of precipitation, i.e. ~ rain and snow fall.” The snow pack, while of importance for towns drawing from the river and watersheds, has far less impact on the Ferndale well water supply.
According to the most recent precipitation summary provided by the National Weather Service, our area, as well as the rest of Western Washington, has received 122% the normal amount of precipitation over the past water year (October to September). While the 3-month outlook forecasts below normal precipitation how much below is not specified.
According to City staff, “Through long-term planning efforts, we know that we have an adequate water supply through the next 20 years at least.”
Regarding increased demand over time due to the growing population, City staff assured, “It’s less about availability of water overall and more that we will be ensuring we have an adequate amount of rights, which are doled out by the state, for the system. There are no concerns that we won’t have the ability to acquire more water rights in the future.”