On Thursday, the Bureau of Reclamation announced that not only will senior water rights holder in the Yakima Basin get their full allotment of water; but in addition, junior water rights holders will receive up to 100% of their water. Reclamation’s decision was based on the July total water supply forecast which showed considerable improvement from June’s report.
“The high elevation snowpack provided enough inflows to fill three of the five Yakima System reservoirs, while also meeting downstream demands,” said Chuck Garner, Yakima Project River Operations supervisor.
The July forecast is based on flows, precipitation, snowpack and reservoir storage as of July 1st, along with estimates of future precipitation and river flows. The Yakima Field office evaluates several runoff forecasts provided by other water resource agencies in its development. Future weather conditions that determine the timing of the runoff and the demand for water also are critical in determining stream flows, prorations and the extent to which the reservoirs fill.
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