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Sonoma County Water Agency officials have inflated a rubber dam on the Russian River to help ensure the drinking water supply to about 600,000 residents of Sonoma and Marin counties.

The dam near Forestville is being inflated because of dry conditions this year and increasing demands for water. It is an important component of the Russian River water supply system.

Residents are urged to conserve water this year as the rainfall amounts and reservoir levels in the Russian River basin have been and are low.