Water Deliveries Set for June
Bill Stretch, General Manager
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 24, 2022
Deliveries Beyond July Remain Uncertain
As this year’s significant drought conditions continue, the Fresno Irrigation District (FID) is still set to begin its2022 irrigation water deliveries on June 1 for a two month water season consisting of June and July. While the District has not yet committed to the ability to make water deliveries beyond July, the District continues to monitor water and snowpack conditions and will make a determination on any additional water deliveries once projections have more certainty.
FID continues to track updates from the Airborne Snow Observatories (ASO) models, National Weather Service and the California Department of Water Resources (DWR). DWR’s May 17 Bulletin 120 runoff projection for the Kings River was reduced to 38% of average, which was downgraded from the April 26 projection of 44% of average. However, the cooler temperatures experienced in April and May have reduced snowmelt rates which helps FID’s overall water entitlements on the Kings River.
“While we were able to help our agricultural users by making a decision in April to have a June 1 start date, there are still too many uncertainties and too many discrepancies between water supply models to be able to make a sound decision for deliveries beyond July at this time,” said Bill Stretch, FID general manager. “In general, 2022 water supplies are anticipated to be in between what FID experienced in 2020 and 2021. The 2020 water year resulted in a three-month run, and 2021 resulted in a one-month run and the third driest year in recorded Kings River history.”
FID’s Kings River entitlement depends upon each day’s natural river runoff. While FID receives most of its surface water supplies from the Kings River, FID also receives San Joaquin River supplies via the Bureau of Reclamation’s Central Valley Project. The Bureau announced on February 23 a 15% Class 1 allocation and 0% Class 2 allocation. Similar to the Kings River watershed, the San Joaquin River watershed is also experiencing severely dry conditions.
FID staff continues to ready the system for deliveries to ensure a smooth irrigation season. Water will begin to fill canals in the coming week.
Since 1920, the Fresno Irrigation District has proudly delivered water to agricultural and urban communities within Fresno County. Today, the District encompasses over 250,000 acres of prime farmland and municipal areas, including the cities of Fresno and Clovis. As the premier irrigation district in the Central Valley, the District is extensively involved in a host of local, state, and federal water issues.