Massive reduction in releases of reservoir water should not impact San Diego water supply

SAN DIEGO – A massive reduction in releases of reservoir water to the Colorado River planned for this fall should not impact San Diego’s water supply over the next year, the San Diego County Water Authority announced today.

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation plans a major cut to the amount of water flowing from Lake Powell, on the Arizona-Utah state line, to Lake Mead, in Nevada, when the ”water year” begins on Oct. 1.

The reduction comes after two years of especially dry conditions and continuing population growth in the Southwest, which depends on the Colorado River for water. A study by the bureau said demand on the river could outstrip supply in less than 50 years.

Experts say the bureau’s move is historic, according to published reports. The San Diego CWA said the release of water from Lake Powell will be the smallest since the 1960s.

”Shrinking reservoirs on the Colorado River reinforce the need to rethink water use in the Southwest,” said Halla Razak, Colorado River Program Director for the SDCWA. ”We will need innovation, collaboration and dedication to meet the challenges ahead.”

The water authority said that while it will receive enough Colorado River water next year, the decision by federal water officials shows the need to continue to diversify the local supply.

”In San Diego County, we have been working hard for the past two decades to weather dry times by expanding reservoirs, diversifying water supply sources and promoting water conservation as a way of life, not just a response to emergencies,” Razak said. ”Residents have embraced that ethic — and we all need to keep doing what we can to make sure that we use every drop as efficiently as possible.”

The water authority said per capita water use in San Diego County dropped by 30 percent between 2007 and 2012.

12 Responses to "Massive reduction in releases of reservoir water should not impact San Diego water supply"

  1. De Luz Neighbor   August 17, 2013 at 7:43 pm

    Avo Farmer,

    Let me ask you this; why in the world do we need SDCWA? Why aren’t we buying directly from Metropolitan Water District? We’re at the head of the pipeline! We don’t use SDCWA’s infrastructure! Are we Crazy? I can’t think of one single reason why we don’t kick them to the curb and save a TON of money.

    Remember this?

  2. Peter Amschel   August 18, 2013 at 5:15 am

    How do we know that fruits, almonds, hay, vegetables, cows etc grown thru de-watering the Colorado River are products benefiting the Colorado River watershed? Most likely such water products are sold wordldwide to the highest bidders. If water use produces assets sold outside the Colorado river basin it is no more of a beneficial use of the water than that of Denver. Denver diverts massive amounts of Colorado River water for profligate waste outside the watershed basin through tunnels under the Continental Divide.

  3. De Luz Neighbor   August 19, 2013 at 9:50 am

    That’s okay Avo Farmer, the questions were rhetorical. 

I believe Lake Skinner is under contract with Metropolitan and the filtration plant is there.

    Fallbrook, Rainbow and De Luz have their own direct tie-ins to the aqueduct.

    Water is free. We pay mostly for the cost of pumping, installing and maintaining the infrastructure and for the administration of the distribution.

    My fear, in this case, is that by the time someone is brought up to speed and has the expertise needed to run a water district, they have been thoroughly indoctrinated into the existing system. They can no longer distinguish what’s best for their consumers from what’s best for their network of administrators and their underlings. I suppose ‘They’ll’ argue that there’s strength in having many consolidated member-agencies but the price we pay for water and where that money goes speaks for itself.

    It’s so important for a water district to become ‘drought resistant’ and to have alternative water sources. There is no facility to move water from the ‘South’ to Fallbrook, Rainbow or De Luz. We pay for the Southern facilities but receive no benefit. To their credit, FPUD has made some important strides and maybe someday we’ll go beyond the joint groundwater-project with Pendleton and include a seawater treatment facility.

    I haven’t seen the billboard but that’s totally awesome! It just goes to show how important it is for districts to be proactive and develop every available water source and follow every single cost saving strategy. I wonder if we could hire their manager to consult with our district.

  4. FR86   August 19, 2013 at 10:19 am

    The only hope for water for agricultural purposes in the southwest is wells, reclamation and desalinization. I’m sure the sources from northern California and the Colorado River are at capacity to support the growing population.

  5. Lee   August 19, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    My dear fellow Fallbrookers, WHY do you think our water rates have risen in the last several years? Why? Have you wondered that? Oh sure, the obvious answer is that there is more demand and less water, logistical matters to deliver the water, and the usual explanations which would seem logical.


    What would happen, and is in fact slowly happening already, when you raise water rates in an agricultural region like Fallbrook? Well, the obvious answer is that avocado growers will slowly, one by one, turn off their sprinklers and abandon avocado growing. And what happens then? Well, developers are licking their chops to come in, homes are built, and parcels are subdivided. And who would that possibly benefit? WHY would somebody want to do so? Why more homes and less agriculture? Who could possibly benefit from more homes/housing?

    Camp Pendleton.

    Camp Pendleton would LOVE to turn Fallbrook into another Oceanside. Why? Very simple: Camp Pendleton needs more affordable housing nearby. How to go about achieving this? Screw around with the fundamentals — water, electricity, etc. — and you almost have a guaranteed exodus of agriculture.

    And an influx of track homes.

  6. Seriously??   August 20, 2013 at 10:17 am

    @Lee: Of all the wackadoodle comments that you have come up with, and those are more numerous than the hairs on our heads, this one takes the cake!! What are you smoking? Camp Pendleton doesn’t need more affordable housing, they have base housing for their people. The only thing keeping Fallbrook from becoming more like Orange County is Camp Pendleton. Open land. They are a buffer between us and urban sprawl. You can thank the nitwits in Sacramento and Washington for the high water rates. They turned off the sprinklers in the central valley because of some endangered smelt, that no one ever heard of, or cares about, and took away the livelihood of farmers who had been farming that land for generations. That is corruption at it’s finest. Avo Farmer is right on in his comments. Camp Pendleton has nothing to do with our water rates going up. That idea is ludicrous, but then Lee came up with it, so what else is new.

  7. OMG   August 20, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    I haven’t seen any sub-dividing for a coons-age. Not in Fallbrook or Bonsall…KB homes off Gum Tree. And they were begging for people to buy their homes.

    Camp P has some of the oldest, run down barracks you’d ever see. It’s sad. They use one for discipline – no running water. They finally built 4-4 story ones that are full but also have WWII’s barracks – oh and by the way, no air conditioning.

    Seriously?? finally figured it out…what are you smokin up there.

  8. Lee   August 20, 2013 at 9:51 pm

    @ #9 Seriously

    Why do you comment to my remarks if you believe they are nauseating? # 26 That makes no sense whatsoever.

  9. Seriously??   August 21, 2013 at 8:41 am

    @Lee comment #9: It’s like watching a train wreck. Impossible to look away. BTW, I believe you are the one who said that your comments are nauseating. I merely agreed with you.

  10. Lee   August 21, 2013 at 3:37 pm

    @ Seriously #12

    Please read my comment # 21 @ and your comment #26 to realize the difference in semantics. If you don’t understand that ever-so-subtle point, oh well. I had stated a slightly humorous, oh, assessment of a debate/answers; you had stated that something is a fact. Again, if you don’t understand the diff, oh well.

    Again, if you believe that my comments are nauseating, why do you persist in commenting on them? TRULY baffling for sure.

  11. Seriously??   August 21, 2013 at 7:50 pm

    Because commenting on some of the ridiculous things you say is unavoidable, you are such an easy mark. It’s like shooting fish in a barrel…. uh oh, bad metaphor…. now you will think of guns…. again…

    Regarding semantics. I understand it quite well. You however, do not seem to understand when I am being facetious…. making a funny, being droll…..

  12. Lee   August 22, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    @ #14 Seriously

    What I think of my comments, after all is said and done, does not matter to you. What you, the reader, thinks of them does matter to you. So if YOU think them nauseating, again, why do you persist on reading them and commenting on them?

    When you see a bad movie, do you go see it the next night a second time? Are you into BDSM?



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