N.J. in early stage of drought

New Jersey is now in the early stages of a drought.

State climatologist Dave Robinson says rainfall in the Garden State over the past several weeks has been less than a third of what it usually is.

“We’ve accumulated such a deficit that … in the coming weeks, it threatens our ability to have sufficient water in the ground and flowing down the rivers,” Robinson said.

This is the start of the spring growing season and farmers are concerned about the dry conditions.

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“If we don’t have the rain it will be a tough growing year, said Rich Norz who owns Norz Hill Farm in Hillsborough. “If you don’t get adequate moisture you get a very poor crop. This is my livelihood so without a crop it makes it quite difficult.”

Reservoir levels in New Jersey are above average, and there are no restrictions on water use. A Department of Environmental Protection spokesman says that could change if there’s no significant rainfall in coming weeks.

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