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Several SW Sask. water reservoirs unlikely to fill this year

Posted on 16 April 2024 by Ryan Dahlman

Alberta Newspaper Group

Most reservoirs in Saskatchewan are at good levels ahead of an expectedly dry spring and summer, but six in the southwest of the province likely will not fill this year, according to the Saskatchewan Water Agency.

The largest reservoir in the province, Lake Diefenbaker, is slightly above last year’s levels after the water authority allowed it to begin filling sooner than usual last fall.

It supplies about 60 per cent of the water in the province from the South Saskatchewan River system.

Last month the SWA predicted a severe lack of runoff could lead to supply issues in the southwest region.

“Over the winter, snowpack conditions ranged from below normal to well-below normal,” it stated in a bulletin on April 3. “While runoff conditions can change during late winter and spring, SWA will continue to monitor moisture and forecasted weather patterns and adjust operating plans accordingly.”

Among smaller reservoirs, shortfalls are mostly located around Maple Creek, including the Junction, Harris, Downie and McDougald reservoirs.

The Cypress reservoir, further south, is at about 75 per cent capacity, above

historical average. Near Swift Current, five of six reservoirs are almost full.

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