Central Valley Project, Drought, Water Supply

CVP Opens Water Year 2010 at 39 Percent of Capacity

Shasta at 31% of capacity (Feb 2009). Courtesy of SF Chronicle.

Happy (belated) New Year! — water year, of course. The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has announced that we started water year 2010 this October with Central Valley Project reservoirs filled with just 4.4 million acre-feet of water, or 39% of total storage capacity. This is an improvement over last year (35% of capacity), and it’s a different ball game from the drought in 1977 (when only 1.1 million acre-feet were stored), but it is still noticeably less than the fifteen-year average (59% of capacity). The breakdown for the five main federal reservoirs:

  • Shasta: 1.8 MAF (4.5 MAF total)
  • New Melones: 1.1 MAF (2.4 MAF total)
  • Trinity: 0.9 MAF (2.4 MAF total)
  • Folsom: 0.4 MAF (0.98 MAF total)
  • San Luis (federal portion): 0.2 MAF (0.97 MAF total)

The full breakdown, with comparison to the water year that ended in 2008, from Reclamation:

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