This morning, during the monthly river operations meeting, the United States Bureau of Reclamation provided Yakima Basin irrigators with an updated water supply forecast. The proratable irrigators, including KID, are projected to have 86% of their total water allotment.
At this time KID will not be implementing a watering schedule. However, water supply is dependent on mitigating factors, which can greatly impact water availability later in the season. Therefore, we ask that customers consider taking steps to retrain their lawns and implement water efficiency methods. In general, decreasing the frequency of the number of watering days and watering for longer durations, dependant on soil type, will help vegetation to be better prepared to survive drier conditions. For more specific information on water efficiency, determining soil type and other helpful information go to our website or visit the Benton Conservation’s website at http://bentoncd.org/ and the Washington State University Extension website at http://extension.wsu.edu/ .
KID is the last Yakima Basin Project irrigator on the Yakima River and our water right allows KID to take a portion of the water returned to the river by upstream water users above the reduced percentage of the allotted TWSA (Total Water Supply Available) so long as federal target flow requirements are met. This has historically benefitted KID customers during times of low water supply. Reductions to upstream water users will impact KID and therefore, actual water supply available to KID may vary and will require careful monitoring of the situation to better determine the impact of these reductions to the District’s customers.
The USBR will announce new TWSA numbers during the first part of July and KID is prepared to implement scheduling should it become necessary to do so in order to equitably distribute available water resources. Scheduling will be designed to maximize beneficial use of the water that is available within the operational constraints of the delivery system. Updated information will be posted on our website and Facebook page as it becomes available.