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Reservoirs Now Critically Low

Burec

Storage of water in the major storage reservoirs of the Upper Snake River Basin is graphically low now as drought conditions continue into the end of the growing season in southern Idaho.  According to the Bureau of Reclamation, the system collectively is at only 15% of its storage capacity, although some of the reservoirs are incredibly low.  West of Pocatello, the American Falls reservoir is now only four percent filled while closer to Jackson Hole, Palisades Reservoir is down to six percent of its capacity. Jackson Lake has 34% of its storage capacity remaining and Bureau of Reclamation Spokesman Mike Beus says water is still being drawn from the reservoir.   Beus says, “It may go down as much as another 10% by the end of this month.”  Beus adds that the last time there was this much need for stored water was in 2007, and fortunately at that time, there was carry-over in the reservoirs from the previous year.  Consequently, he says “we’ve drawn a little heavier on Jackson Lake than in 2007.”  Beus says rainstorms south of the Snake River in southern Idaho have helped with needed moisture while north of the river, many of the crops have already been harvested.  Consequently, says Beus, “We think we have just squeaked by.”  Beus says the last time water supplies were this low was in the early 2000’s.

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