Water experts weigh in on availability of water this summer

Record snow; low water use is still in style

Mother Nature has delivered a much needed, historic winter when it comes to snow and rainfall. Here are some of the latest reservoir levels from across the state before spring runoff:

  • Jordanelle 59% full
  • Pineview 23% full
  • Sand Hollow 90% full
  • Strawberry 75% full
  • Willard Bay 71% full

So, what does this mean for our spring and summer watering plans? The added precipitation gives Utah the ability to build our “water savings accounts” and stop draining them. The extra water will help with two major goals. If Utahns will self-restrict outdoor water use these coming summer months, we help restore our water storage and importantly put some much-needed water into the Great Salt Lake.

“Waiting to water until our landscapes really need it and keeping our outdoor water use low this summer is more important than ever,” Weber Basin Water Conservancy District General Manager Scott Paxman said. “The less we use, the more we store and support the Great Salt Lake.”

“Storing water in reservoirs got us through the past 23 years of drought. This is in large part because we planned ahead,” said Gene Shawcroft, General Manager of Central Utah Water Conservancy District. “But the water storage situation, including groundwater, has taken a hit. This is a year we conserve to repair.”

As Utah grows, water needs become more demanding – and leading the needs right now is the Great Salt Lake. Using only what’s necessary, particularly when watering outside, is something everyone can be involved in. Utahns have a long history of rejecting mandates but being willing to self-sacrifice to maintain our quality of life. 

“Conserving water needs to be our way of life, it will always be in style,” Alan Packard, General Manager of Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District said. “Everything you don’t put on your yard supports repairing the Great Salt Lake and building our water storage that we rely on in tough times.”

Even as we look outside and see epic snow, and prepare for flooding – early spring is the time for every Utahn to be thinking about their water use and how they can do their part to conserve during summer months. There are many things that individuals can do to help save water that are easy and small changes, with little impact to current lifestyles. Here’s how water conservancy districts can support your efforts:

“Pulling together in times of need is what characterizes the people of Utah,” said Zach Renstrom, General Manager of Washington County Water Conservancy District. “Cutting down the water we use this summer has specific and critical payoffs for Utah’s future.”

Prepare60 is the center established by the four largest water conservancy districts to protect what we have, use it wisely, and provide for the future. These districts include Central Utah, Jordan Valley, Washington County, and Weber Basin. Together, these water conservancy districts deliver water to approximately 90% of Utah’s population.