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  1. 3/5/2010 2010 PRECIPITATION AND SNOWPACK LEVELS ARE CLOSE TO 2001 - 2002 DROUGHT LEVELS, BUT DON’T PANIC
  2. As of March 1, 2010 snow-pack readings in the two watersheds that supplies water to Denver Water, the Upper South Platte and Upper Colorado, is tracking only slightly better than the 2002 drought levels, (76% of average compared to 70% of average on March 1, 2002), Bob Steger, a water resource engineer with the Denver Water Department stated this week. However, there are differences in this year’s readings as compared to the 2002 situation. According to Mr. Steger the Upper South Platte snowpack is significantly higher now (74% of average on March 1) than it was in 2002 (45% of average). Also Denver Water’s reservoir storage is considerably higher than it was at this time back in 2002. On March 1, 2010, our available reservoir storage was 85% of capacity; on March 1, 2002, available storage was 74% of capacity.

    But there is no reason to panic, Steger said. “It’s too soon to say what sort of water year it’s going to be. Denver Water is monitoring the situation closely and will respond to conditions as they unfold.” Historically, March through May are the “wettest” months for the mountains and the Denver Metro Area. “A lot can happen between now and the start of the lawn watering season” states Steger, and snowpack and precipitation data is still being collected by the Natural Resources Conservation Service, a branch of the United States Department of Agriculture. The Natural Resources Conservation Service collects data daily from automatic sensors as well as manually. Manual readings are collected on a weekly basis and included in the overall data report. Typically in a year with average snow-pack levels the reservoirs fill to their expected levels for the summer season.

    For current reservoir levels in the Denver Water system, please visit their Water Supply page by clicking here.