Calif. DWR increases State Water Project allocation

The Calif. Dept. of Water Resources (DWR) has increased its allocation of 2008 State Water Project (SWP) water for long-term contractors from 25% to 35% of requests. DWR Director Lester Snow credits a wetter-than-average January for an increase in water supplies and snowpack. The 29 long-term SWP Contractors distribute water to more than 25 million Californians and approximately 750,000 acres of irrigated agricultural land. DWR may increase the SWP allocation as hydrologic conditions develop...

SACRAMENTO, CA, Feb. 4, 2008 -- The Calif. Department of Water Resources (DWR) has increased its allocation of 2008 State Water Project (SWP) water for long-term contractors from 25 percent to 35 percent of requests.

"We can credit a wetter-than-average Jan. for an impressive increase in our water supplies and snowpack," said DWR Director Lester Snow. "However, tighter pumping restrictions in the Delta will limit how much of this water we can actually provide to many parts of Southern California, the Central Valley and the Bay Area."

Last year, a federal court curtailed Delta pumping by state and federal water projects to protect the threatened Delta smelt. DWR estimates that the 35 percent allocation would be 50 percent without the court decision actions in place.

To address the need for action to protect the Delta Governor Schwarzenegger directed a Delta Vision Blue Ribbon Task Force in 2006 to develop a "Delta Vision" to provide a sustainable management program for the Delta. The Delta Vision was recently submitted to the governor and a strategic implementation plan is expected in October 2008. The allocation increase will boost State Water Project (SWP) water for long-term contractors from 1,038,861 acre-feet to 1,457,283 acre-feet. Based on recent precipitation and current water supply conditions, SWP supplies are projected to meet 35 percent of most SWP contractors' 2008 Table A amounts which collectively total 4,165,931 acre-feet.

The 29 long-term SWP Contractors distribute water to more than 25 million Californians and approximately 750,000 acres of irrigated agricultural land.

DWR may increase the SWP allocation as hydrologic conditions develop. The allocation notice to SWP contractors appears on these DWR State Water Project Analysis Office Web sites:
http://www.swpao.water.ca.gov/deliveries
http://www.swpao.water.ca.gov/notices

The Department of Water Resources operates and maintains the State Water Project, provides dam safety and flood control and inspection services, assists local water districts in water management and water conservation planning, and plans for future statewide water needs

Contact the DWR Public Affairs Office for more information about DWR's water activities.

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Also see:
-- "Statement of Lester Snow, Director, California Department of Water Resources"

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