The drought, combined with the pumping restrictions in the Delta demonstrate the vulnerability of the Bay Area's water supply and the need to invest in water resources and infrastructure.
San Jose (Vocus) February 21, 2009
The Santa Clara Valley Water District (District) relies on imported water for half of its drinking water supply and those supplies will be sharply reduced. Today, the State Department of Water Resources (DWR) announced it will deliver only 15 percent of the District's 100,000 acre-foot State Water Project contract, while the Federal Bureau of Reclamation announced its deliveries to the District will only be 50 percent of its Central Valley Project contract. What do the reductions mean for Santa Clara County? In total, the imported water supply is cut by two-thirds of contract amounts.
"These reductions in our imported water supply will impact us greatly," said water district CEO Sharon Judkins. "The recent rains have helped boost water supply both locally and statewide, but the drought is obviously far from over."
According to DWR, the decision reflects low levels in the state's major reservoirs, the ongoing drought and Delta pumping restrictions.
Judkins continued, "The drought, combined with the pumping restrictions in the Delta demonstrate the vulnerability of the Bay Area's water supply and the need to invest in water resources and infrastructure."
To make up for this shortfall in imported water, the water district will have to draw on reserves from groundwater basins, local reservoirs, and banked water outside the county.
Water conservation becomes increasingly important as supplies become less reliable. Currently the board's call for 10% voluntary conservation remains in effect. However, if the water supply outlook doesn't improve significantly by March 24, the board is prepared to call for mandatory conservation.
The Santa Clara Valley Water District manages water resources and provides stewardship for the county's five watersheds, including 10 reservoirs, hundreds of miles of streams and groundwater basins. The water district also provides flood protection throughout Santa Clara County.
Contact: Susan Siravo
Office: (408) 265-2607, ext. 2290
Cell: (408) 398-0754
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