Alta Irrigation District

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Dinuba, CA – The Alta Irrigation District (Alta) Board of Directors decided, at a regularly scheduled meeting on June 10th, that available water supply is not sufficient for a water run this year.

As dry weather conditions persist across the state, federal and state agencies continue to downgrade runoff forecasts for river systems. According to Bulletin 120 from the California Department of Water Resources, Kings River runoff for April through July is projected to be 25% of average, which would be the fourth driest in over 125 years. Runoff forecasts fell 35 points since release of the first Bulletin 120 report in February.

Unfortunately, this year is not the first time Alta did not have sufficient water supply for a water run. During the final year of the driest three-year period (2013-15) on record, Alta did not receive any water supply during the peak runoff period of April through July, which prevented a water run. Alta’s share of Kings River runoff during that 2015 Water Year was its lowest on record. As for the 2021 Water Year, Kings River runoff for Alta is currently the third lowest on record and it is not expected to improve during the remaining months – the 1977 Water Year had the second lowest runoff volume. These dry years serve as a reminder about the importance of system reoperations during wet years such as 2017 and 2019. Collectively, reoperations allowed Alta to divert about an additional 91,000 acre-feet of water, which benefited the local aquifer. Alta will continue to enhance its reoperation efforts and implement new projects to capture Kings River flood flows.