Water Supplies In Karst Regions

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Regional water supply is expected to be adequate, according to data released from the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).

As of June 1, the Clearwater Basin had above normal snowpack, recorded at 115 percent. June-July cumulative streamflow forecasts for Clearwater are near or above average.

In its sixth and final water supply outlook report for the 2018 water year, NRCS noted the majority of streams across the state have seen their snowmelt streamflow peak for the season. The May rain provided a boost in runoff for many rivers with the exceptions being in southern Idaho.

Overall, precipitation since the water year started on Oct. 1, 2017, varies across the state with watersheds ranging from 80 to 120 percent of average.

According to NRCS, after a cool and wet April in the Clearwater Basin, May’s precipitation totals were less than 75 percent of average, and temperatures were several degrees warmer than normal. After well above average winter and spring snow accumulation left peak totals at 110-115 percent of normal in mid-April, the warm temperatures and rapid melting this past month will likely result in normal or earlier than normal melt out dates for sites with remaining snow.

As of June 1, some snow monitoring sites still have more than 30 inches of snow water equivalent on the ground, but with another warm month projected ahead, NRCS stated these sites will likely be snow-free by early July.

“The thing to remember is that overall, Idaho’s water users will have an adequate supply resulting from a combination of the 2017 snowfall that provided excellent reservoir carryover storage and stream flows that were above average all winter,” said Ron Abramovich, Idaho NRCS water supply specialist.

Source : http://www.idahocountyfreepress.com/news/2018/jun/20/regional-water-supply-expected-be-adequate/

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