Utah Governor Asking All Citizens to Pray For Rain This Weekend to End Drought

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The drought situation in Utah is bad right now––really bad. 97.9% of the state is in severe drought. Governor Spencer Cox has already issued two emergency drought declarations and encouraged citizens to do their part with water conservation. But with the situation not getting any better, he’s decided what the state really needs is help from above.

Gov Cox is declaring this weekend a “weekend of prayer.” From Friday through Sunday, he is asking Utahns to join him in asking God for more rain.

“I’ve already asked all Utahns to conserve water by avoiding long showers, fixing leaky faucets, and planting waterwise landscapes. But I fear those efforts alone won’t be enough to protect us. We need more rain, and we need it now.

Prayer is powerful. And I encourage all Utahns, regardless of religious affiliation, to join together on this weekend of prayer.”

– Utah Governor Spencer Cox

Cox believes that by “praying collaboratively and collectively, asking God or whatever higher power you believe in for more rain, we may be able to escape the deadliest aspects of the continuing drought.”

Utah experienced a dry winter, and rain in spring has not been forthcoming, leaving the state’s reservoirs well below capacity. The dry soil, low waterways, and increased wildfire risk affect 2.7-million citizens or 82% of the state’s population.

Except for the freak week in February when over five feet of snow fell, closing both Alta and Snowbird for a record three days, the snowpack was below average all winter.

Officials in charge of Utah waters say the request is a cover because state leaders have been blind to what is required to maintain the water sector for decades and are reluctant to acknowledge that climate change is drying up the west. Policy changes, not prayer, are what is required.

“There’s nothing wrong with prayer, but it shouldn’t blind us to what we have to do on this Earth. And the state leaders have been blind to what we need to do in the water sector for decades.”

– Zachary Frankel, executive director of the Utah Rivers Council

utah drought,
The current drought status in Utah. Credit: drought.gov

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