News

Reclamation announces initial water supply allocation for the Central Valley Project

Media Contact: Erin Curtis, 916-978-5100

For Release: February 20, 2018

Shasta Dam
Shasta Dam

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Bureau of Reclamation today announced the initial 2018 water supply allocation for many Central Valley Project contractors. This allocation is based on a conservative estimate of the amount of water that will be available for delivery to CVP water users and reflects current reservoir storages, precipitation and snowpack in the Central Valley and Sierra Nevada.

The 2017 water year was the wettest on record for most of northern California and CVP reservoirs were essentially full for the first time in five years; however, precipitation so far this year has been far below average. The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) reports that as of February 15, the statewide average snow water equivalent in the Sierra Nevada was 4.3 inches (20 percent of the historical average), and rainfall is currently at approximately 60 percent of the historical average for the northern Central Valley.

“Despite the historic rainfall last year, California’s lack of sufficient water storage forces us to operate on a year-to-year basis. The amount we can store in our reservoirs is not enough to get us through these very dry years,” said David Murillo, Reclamation’s Mid-Pacific Regional Director. “Given what we know today, and what we see in the forecast, we must be very conservative with our allocation. If this lack of rain and snow continues, we could very well be right back in drought operations. A situation like this really underscores the need for more storage in California.”

“There are many factors we have to consider when determining CVP allocations – hydrologic conditions, reservoir storage levels, water quality requirements, water rights priority, contractual obligations, and endangered species protections,” Murillo said. “All of these are taken into account with the goal of exercising all authorities available to us to maximize water supplies.”

Given storage of CVP water in San Luis, Millerton, and New Melones Reservoirs, as well as conservative assumptions regarding Delta operations over the next couple of months, Reclamation is able to provide an initial allocation to South-of-Delta, Friant, and Eastside contractors of the CVP. Regarding the remainder of the allocations to CVP contractors, although the CVP is operationally integrated, each individual reservoir has unique and specific operational criteria that must also be met. Due to the extremely low snowpack levels and associated runoff forecasts, combined with the uncertainty in the ability to manage Shasta Reservoir in a way that will provide adequate temperatures for the protection of endangered salmon species in the Sacramento River throughout the summer and fall in 2018, Reclamation will not be providing an initial allocation of water to North-of-Delta Contractors at this time. The integrated nature of the operation of Shasta and Folsom Reservoirs requires the same approach for American River and In-Delta Contractors.

Reclamation will be working with these contractors, as well as the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), during the next week to ensure that water will continue to be delivered to meet public health and safety needs for Municipal and industrial (M&I) contractors and appropriate minimal needs of agricultural contractors during the month of March. This approach will allow Reclamation, NMFS, and the contractors to refine operating scenarios based on updated snowpack and runoff forecasts in March, and develop appropriate plans for dealing with the extremely dry conditions should they continue.

Should conditions change, CVP supplies could also change. Reclamation will continue working with the DWR, federal and state fishery agencies, our contractors, and others to effectively carry out project operations and improve water supply consistent with all applicable laws. Based on the information outlined above, Reclamation is announcing the initial allocation to the following:

South-of-Delta Contractors

  • Agricultural water service contractors South-of-Delta are allocated 20 percent of their contract total.
  • I water service contractors South-of-Delta are allocated the greater of 70 percent of their historic use or public health and safety needs.

Friant Division Contractors

  • Based upon Millerton Lake storage and current and forecasted hydrologic conditions in the Upper San Joaquin River Basin, the Friant Division contractors are allocated 30 percent of Class 1 supplies.
  • For the San Joaquin River Restoration Project, the current best forecast developed jointly by SJRRP and the South-Central California Area Office now indicates a “Critical-High” water year type.

Eastside Water Service Contractors

  • Eastside water service contractors (Central San Joaquin Water Conservation District and Stockton East Water District) will receive 100 percent of their contract total.

On February 15, Reclamation notified the Sacramento River Settlement Contractors, San Joaquin River Exchange Contractors, San Joaquin Settlement Contractors, and Refuge Contractors that the forecasted inflow to Shasta Lake is currently greater than 3.2 million acre-feet and we are not currently in a “Shasta Critical” year as that term is defined in their contracts.

Current dry conditions and the dry forecast underscore the need for all Californians to be conservative in their water use this spring, Murillo said. Without significant rain and snow this spring, conditions could worsen.

As the water year progresses, changes in hydrology and opportunities to deliver additional water will influence future allocations. Water supply updates will be made as appropriate and posted at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/cvp-water/index.html.

For additional information, please contact the Public Affairs Office at 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339) or email mppublicaffairs@usbr.gov.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier in the United States, and the nation’s second largest producer of hydroelectric power. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at https://www.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

 

 

FEBRUARY 28, 2017

Reclamation Announces Initial Water Supply Allocation for the Central Valley Project

SACRAMENTO, Calif.  – The Bureau of Reclamation today announced the initial 2017 water supply allocation for Central Valley Project contractors in the Friant Division, Eastside Division and Municipal & Industrial Water Service Contractors in the American River Division.

“The 2017 water year has been an extreme year thus far, with precipitation throughout the Central Valley on track to be the highest in our historic records,” said Reclamation’s Acting Mid-Pacific Regional Director Pablo Arroyave. “As such, Reclamation is taking an approach to the announcement of CVP water allocations this year that differs from our historic practice.”

Given that inflow to Shasta Lake has already exceeded the volume necessary to be certain that this is not declared a Shasta Critical Year, Reclamation has notified the Sacramento River Settlement Contractors, San Joaquin River Exchange Contractors and Refuge Contractors of that fact. Regarding the remainder of the allocations to CVP contractors, although the CVP is operationally integrated, each individual reservoir has unique and specific operational criteria that must also be met. With this initial allocation announcement, Reclamation is targeting districts that receive water directly from Folsom, New Melones and Millerton reservoirs given the large snow pack and unusually high projected runoff this spring and summer.

The remaining water service contractors can expect an initial contract allocation amount in mid-to-late March. As Reclamation continues to refine the water supply allocation for these contractors, Reclamation will take advantage of the current hydrology to ensure specific districts’ water needs are met to the maximum extent practicable. While this allocation approach is warranted now, in future years Reclamation will continue to strive to release initial allocations for all water users in February.

Specific to the South-of-Delta water service contractors, a substantial amount of CVP water is already in storage south of the Delta, and the Federal share of San Luis Reservoir will be full within the first week of March. Given the extraordinary large snow pack and very high river flows this year, much of the water currently in storage in the Federal share of San Luis Reservoir will be available for delivery to CVP water service contractors this spring and summer.

Reclamation currently estimates that at least 900 thousand acre-feet of water will be available for delivery to South-of-Delta water service contractors this year, and additional supplies will likely be available once seasonal operational forecasts are developed later in March. The 900 taf estimate represents the combined delivery of both 2017 CVP supplies and carryover supplies from last year. The exact amount of each type of supply is subject to hydrologic conditions this spring, and the overall allocation of water south of the Delta must be validated by the operational studies to be based on the March 1 snow surveys and runoff forecasts.

The California Department of Water Resources reports that as of Feb. 27, 2017, the statewide average snow water equivalent in the Sierra Nevada was 45 inches, as compared to 21 inches on Feb. 27, 2016. Precipitation is currently over 200 percent of the seasonal average to date for the Sierra Nevada for this point in the water year (beginning Oct. 1, 2016).

Reclamation determines the allocation of water for CVP contractors based upon many factors, including hydrologic conditions, reservoir storage levels, water quality requirements, water rights, contractual obligations and endangered species protection measures. After evaluating these factors, Reclamation is announcing the initial allocation to the following:

American River Division Contractors

 American River Division M&I water service contractors will receive 100 percent of their contract supply.

Friant Division Contractors

 Pursuant to Reclamation’s previous discussions with Friant Division contractors and based upon Millerton Lake storage as well as current and forecasted hydrologic conditions in the Upper San Joaquin River Basin, the Friant Division allocation is 100 percent of Class 1 supplies. In addition, as long as current hydrologic and operational conditions exist and there is a need to evacuate water from Millerton Lake in order to prevent or minimize spill or to meet flood control criteria (currently referred to as “uncontrolled season”), Friant contractors may schedule and take delivery of Class 2 supplies up to the contract maximum, consistent with contract terms and conditions.

 Unreleased Restoration Flow supply related to the San Joaquin River Restoration Program of 358,730 acre-feet are being made available in a block that needs to be scheduled and delivered by June 15 to avert flood management concerns.

Eastside Water Service Contractors

 Eastside water service contractors (Central San Joaquin Water Conservation District and Stockton East Water District) will receive 100 percent of their contract supply.

This initial allocation is based on a conservative estimate of the amount of water that will be available for delivery to these CVP water users and reflects current reservoir storages, precipitation, and snowpack in the Central Valley and Sierra Nevada. “We will continue to carefully monitor hydrologic conditions and collaborate with our stakeholders and partners to manage our water resources as effectively as possible,” said Arroyave.

The CVP began the 2017 water year last October with 4.9 million acre-feet of carryover storage in six key CVP reservoirs — Shasta, Trinity, Folsom, Millerton, New Melones and the Federal share of San Luis Reservoir. This is 82 percent of the 15-year average annual carryover and 2 million acre-feet more than the amount with which the Mid-Pacific Region began WY 2016 on Oct. 1, 2015.

As the water year progresses, changes in hydrology and opportunities to deliver additional water will influence future allocations. Water supply updates will be made as appropriate and posted at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/cvp-water/index.html.

For additional information, please contact the Public Affairs Office at 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877- 8339) or email mppublicaffairs@usbr.gov. # #

February 23, 2017

New Melones storage 1.5 million acre feet.

See the attached daily CVP report. CVP Daily Report 02-2017

Reclamation Announces Initial Water Supply Allocation for the Central Valley Project

Media Contact: Shane Hunt, 916-978-5100

For Release: April 01, 2016

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Bureau of Reclamation today announced the initial 2016 water supply allocation for Central Valley Project (CVP) contractors. This allocation is based on a cautious estimate of the amount of water that will be available for delivery to CVP water users and reflects current reservoir storages, precipitation and snowpack in the Central Valley and Sierra Nevada.

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) reports that as of March 30, 2016, the statewide average snow water equivalent in the Sierra Nevada is 24.4 inches, as compared to two inches on this date last year, and rainfall is currently at 125 percent of the historical average. However, in 2015 California experienced its fourth year of drought, and although conditions have greatly improved, Gov. Jerry Brown’s Emergency Drought Proclamation, issued January 17, 2014, remains in effect.

“While we are on track for near-average precipitation season this year, the ongoing and residual impacts of the multi-year drought continue. The impacts this summer will be greatest on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley and some areas served by New Melones Reservoir,” said Reclamation Mid-Pacific Regional Director David Murillo.

Reclamation determines the allocation of CVP water for agricultural, environmental, and municipal and industrial (M&I) purposes based upon many factors including hydrologic conditions, reservoir storage levels, water quality requirements, relative priority of water rights, contractual obligations, and endangered species protection measures.

This initial CVP allocation is also based on conservative assumptions regarding Delta operations over the next couple of months; however, should conditions improve, CVP supplies could also improve, with increased supplies to Reclamation contractors in the hard-hit San Joaquin Valley. Reclamation will continue working with the DWR, federal and state fishery agencies, our contractors, and others to effectively carry out project operations and improve water supply consistent with all applicable laws.

North-of-Delta Contractors

• Agricultural water service contractors North-of-Delta are allocated 100 percent of their contract supply.

• M&I water service contractors North-of-Delta are allocated 100 percent of their contract supply.

• Sacramento River Settlement Contractors are allocated 100 percent of their contract supply.

In-Delta

• The Contra Costa Water District, which receives water directly from the Delta, is allocated 100 percent of its contract supply.

South-of-Delta Contractors

• Agricultural water service contractors South-of-Delta are allocated 5 percent of their contract supply.

• M&I water service contractors South-of-Delta are allocated 55 percent of their historic use.

• San Joaquin River Exchange and Settlement Contractors are allocated 100 percent of their contract supply.

Wildlife Refuges

• Wildlife refuges (Level 2) North- and South-of-Delta are allocated 100 percent of their contract supply.

Friant Division Contractors

• Pursuant to Reclamation’s March 18 notification to Friant Division contractors and based upon Millerton Lake storage and current and forecasted hydrologic conditions in the Upper San Joaquin River Basin, the Friant Division allocation is 30 percent of Class 1 supplies.

• In addition, an Uncontrolled Season supply of 100,000 acre-feet and Unreleased Restoration Flow supply related to the San Joaquin River Restoration Program of 85,000 acre-feet are being made available as blocks that need to be scheduled and delivered by May 1 and May 15 respectively to avert flood management concerns.

Eastside Water Service Contractors

• Eastside water service contractors (Central San Joaquin Water Conservation District and Stockton East Water District) will receive 0 percent of their contract supply due to a lack of available CVP supplies from New Melones Reservoir.

In 2015, Reclamation undertook extraordinary actions to provide public health and safety supplies to our M&I contractors, meet our obligations to the San Joaquin River Exchange Contractors and South-of-Delta refuges, and facilitate water transfer and water sharing agreements throughout the Central Valley.

The CVP began the water year last October with only 47 percent of average storage overall and just 27 percent of average storage in the Federal share of San Luis Reservoir. This compares to 85 percent of average overall for the CVP and 53 percent of average storage in the Federal share of San Luis Reservoir today. Dry conditions in the fall of 2015 also hampered the filling of San Luis Reservoir. Further, throughout the fall and most of the winter, Reclamation held releases to minimal levels to conserve storage in upstream reservoirs.

The combined effect of four years of drought, lack of available water at the beginning of the 2016 water year, and restrictions to protect listed species are impacting the amount of water that can be allocated to South-of-Delta agricultural water service contractors. As the water year progresses, changes in hydrology and opportunities to deliver additional water will influence future allocations. Water supply updates will be made as appropriate and posted at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/cvp-water/index.html.

For additional information, please contact the Public Affairs Office at 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339) or emailmppublicaffairs@usbr.gov.

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For Daily reports on the Water Conditions see this link: Scroll down and click the Daily CVP Report.  Then look under New Melones: http://www.usbr.gov/mp/cvp-water/index.html

 

 

Bureau of Reclamation Outlines Water Year 2016 Central Valley Project Water Supply Conditions

Media Contact: Shane Hunt, 916-978-5100

For Release: January 22, 2016

RENO, NEV. – In preparation for the initial 2016 water supply allocation announcement later this winter, the Bureau of Reclamation is providing an update on water supply conditions for the federal Central Valley Project (CVP). The water year (WY) runs from October 1 to September 30; the contract year for most CVP contractors runs from March 1 to February 28.

The CVP’s reservoir carryover storage from WY 2015 into WY 2016 (October 1, 2015) was 2.9 million acre-feet, which was 24 percent of capacity and 47 percent of the 15-year average for that date in six key CVP reservoirs (Shasta, New Melones, Trinity, Folsom, Millerton, and the federal portion of San Luis). The table below shows conditions in those reservoirs as of January 22 for 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013. As of January 19, 2016, storage in major CVP reservoirs was .963 million acre-feet lower than a year ago.

“On December 30, the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) held their first manual snow survey of the year and found the water content to be 16.3 inches, or 136 percent of the January 1 average. With this promising news and El Niño storms beginning to materialize, we are feeling encouraged,” said Mid-Pacific Regional Director David Murillo. “However, storage in our reservoirs remains low, and we must be prudent as we develop initial operation plans and allocations for CVP water contractors.”

CVP Reservoir Storage Comparisons

for 2016, 2015, 2014 & 2013 and 15-Year Average

As of January 22 for Each Year

Storages Listed in Millions of Acre-feet (MAF)

CVP Reservoir
Capacities

2016

% of
15-year

Average

2015

2014

2013

15-Year Average

Shasta 4.552

1.859

68

1.962

1.659

3.424

2.735

Trinity 2.448

.589

40

.856

1.168

1.913

1.484

Folsom 0.977

.343

85

.447

.166

.557

.405

New Melones 2.420

.355

26

.556

1.047

1.624

1.366

Millerton 0.520

.195

70

.184

.206

.303

.280

Fed. San Luis 0.966

.129

20

.332

.335

.709

.646

Total 11.883

3.470

49

4.337

4.581

8.530

6.916

As of January 19, DWR reported that the Northern Sierra 8-Station Precipitation Index Water Year total was 25.4 inches, which is about 109 percent of the seasonal average to date and 51 percent of an average water year (which is 50.0 inches). The San Joaquin 5-Station Precipitation Index Water Year total was 20.6 inches, which is 116 percent of the seasonal average to date and 50 percent of an average water year (which is 40.8 inches).

On January 15, 2016, Reclamation, DWR, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service, and California Department of Fish and Wildlife submitted the 2016 Drought Contingency Plan to the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB). The Plan outlines projected water operations and potential modifications to water quality rules and water rights permits that project operators may seek, depending on developing hydrologic conditions. The Plan is available on the SWRCB website athttp://www.waterboards.ca.gov/waterrights/water_issues/programs/drought/tucp/docs/febnov_2016plan.pdf .

As required by the exchange and settlement contracts, an initial declaration of whether 2016 is a Shasta Critical year will be announced on or before Feb. 15, 2016. Water supply updates will be made monthly or as appropriate and will be posted on Reclamation’s website at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/cvp-water.

Reclamation balances the operation of the CVP and delivery of CVP water for agricultural, municipal and industrial, and environmental purposes based on factors that include hydrology, changing river and Delta conditions, storage in CVP reservoirs, regulatory requirements, court decisions, biological opinions, environmental considerations, operational limitations and input from other agencies and organizations.

For further information, please visit the CVP water supply website at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/cvp-water/ or contact the Public Affairs Office at 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339) or mppublicaffairs@usbr.gov. For updates, please visit us on Twitter @ReclamationCVP.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website atwww.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

 

Coming soon.