Reclamation announces slight improvement to Yakima basin water supply - August forecast

Media Contact: Annette Ross, 208-378-5322, aross@usbr.gov

For Release: August 02, 2019

Yakima River in the fall with Mt. Adams in the background.
Yakima River in the fall with Mt. Adams in the background.
YAKIMA, Wash. – The Bureau of Reclamation’s August 2019 Total Water Supply Available forecast for the Yakima basin indicates the water supply will fully satisfy senior water rights. Junior water rights will receive an estimated 69% of their entitlements for the period June 3–September 30. This prediction denotes an increase of two percent from the previous month’s forecast.

“The moderate temperatures and precipitation at our reservoirs at 84% of average in July helped stream flows hold up fairly well,” said Chuck Garner, Yakima Project River Operations supervisor. Garner recommends that water conservation always be a part of water usage in the Yakima basin, especially this season with the low water supply.

Reclamation manages the water in the five Yakima Project storage reservoirs, along with the basin’s unregulated inflows to fulfill water rights, water contracts and instream flow obligations. Water shortages in the basin are shared equally by the junior water rights, which represent over half of the water rights in the basin.

Reclamation provides an updated monthly water supply forecast, at least through August, using the latest data each month to reflect any changing conditions as they develop.

The August forecast is based on flows, precipitation, snowpack and reservoir storage through August 1, along with estimates of future precipitation and river flows.

For more information, visit Reclamation’s website at https://www.usbr.gov/pn/hydromet/yakima.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier in the United States, and the nation's second largest producer of hydroelectric power. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at https://www.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

Relevant Link:

https://www.usbr.gov/pn/hydromet/yakima