June rains can ease Tampa Bay's water consumption, but not its historic drought
This week's rains won't provide much respite from what some officials call the region's worst drought in a century.
But even just a few days of grey skies and steady rains can benefit a parched region.
Tampa Bay Water, the agency that manages the area's drinking water supply, said June's early showers have already dramatically slowed daily water consumption across the region.
By Tuesday, officials said their 11 well fields were pumping 50 million fewer gallons a day compared to what the region was consuming during the dry month of May.
That also coincided with water restrictions going into effect across the Tampa Bay region. But Tampa Bay Water sees the rain as sending an important signal to homeowners: they can turn off the sprinklers this week. Their lawns don't need to be watered this week, and maybe next week too.