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Full water supply forecast for this month

A full water supply is in order for senior and junior water-right holders in the Yakima Basin.

That's according to the Bureau of Reclamation's May 2013 forecast released this week.

"The water conditions at the end of April in the Yakima Basin have reservoir levels above average while snowpack is near average at most sites and below average at a few." said Chuck Garner, Yakima Project River Operations supervisor.

At this time, both junior and senior irrigation water rights holders are expected to receive their full water supply. The water supply forecast will be updated each month through July. Specific water delivery levels will not be determined until later in the year when the reservoir system's storage begins to decline.

The May forecast is based on flows, precipitation, snowpack and reservoir storage as of May 1, along with estimates of future precipitation and river flows.

Other future weather conditions that determine the timing of the run-off and the demand for water are also critical in determining stream flows, reservoir storage and the water supply available.

"The upcoming spring and summer weather will have an impact on crop demands and stream flow levels. Water saved through good irrigation practices will help increase the amount of water in the reservoirs at the end of the season," Garner said.

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