Water Usage in Klamath Basin
Addington: “Well, its been the most challenging summer since I’ve been around — and I think most of the producers would tell you the same thing. When you combine the really poor hydrology — we definitely have a drought going on — but you combine that with some of the challenges of operating within a federal Bureau of Reclamation irrigation project it makes it harder. For example, with requirements for certain flows in the river and water left in the lake for endangered species — which when you combine that with the drought - really makes it difficult.”
Klamath Basin Water users began this year knowing that it would be a difficult one — with the third driest year on record. Addington says that there is a bit of a silver lining.
Addington: “When we started the year, we were basically looking at about a 58 percent supply. The good thing I guess is that if you know some of that ahead of time, you can make manage and make some plans but it is very difficult that amount of supply and trying to determine who does and doesn’t get water.”
Earlier this summer it was touch and go as to whether water users would get even that predicted 58 percent of supply, Addington said some recent cool wet weather has helped and it looks like that 58 percent will be what is provided.