Drought has returned to Utah. Poor snowpack for the past two winters means that area reservoirs have not been refilled as much as usual. Another hot, dry summer is predicted, putting further pressure on reduced water supplies.
In early June, the Deseret News quoted Randy Julander, Utah Snow Survey Supervisor with the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service, as saying “The runoff is in recession, and it is going down quickly. Streams have hit their peak for the year and are at the 50 to 60 percent capacity range. That is really bad.”
As a result, reservoir managers have instituted across-the-board reductions in their allocations to all users, including WaterPro, which purchases water from the Deer Creek reservoir. Some communities, such as Lehi and American Fork, have either instituted water rationing or are considering it.
We’ve had droughts before. What’s the big deal?
We live in the desert. While there have always been droughts, our increasing population is putting more pressure on our very limited supply of water. This problem is not going to go away by itself.
What does this water shortage mean for WaterPro and its customers?
As a customer of Deer Creek reservoir, WaterPro will not receive the amount of water we have planned and budgeted for to see our customers through a dry summer.
If our customers continue to use the same amount of culinary water as in previous years, we must purchase additional water at a much higher cost, which must eventually be passed along in higher rates.
In a worst-case scenario, we will not be able to purchase additional water if none is available. In that case, we will be forced to institute restrictions so that everyone can get the amount of water they need.
What can WaterPro customers do to help?
If all our customers cut back their culinary water use by 10%, we estimate that we would have plenty of water to get through the summer.
That may sound like a lot, but there are many relatively painless ways to cut back on water usage. In fact, much of the water we use, particularly outdoors, is wasted.
On the following page you’ll find a wealth of ideas for conserving water. Many of them are painless, and some are even fun. Please consider applying a few of them to conserve our most precious resource.