Water Supply Conditions and Outlook, June 2016
Water supply conditions across Saskatchewan are for the most part adequate, with reservoir and ground water levels generally above average because of several consecutive years of above average precipitation. The Weyburn and North Battleford areas are the only exceptions where some surface water shortages are occurring.
Spring snowmelt was typically a month early in Saskatchewan in 2016, with the southern portion of the province experiencing little or no snowmelt runoff in 2016. Spring rainfall accumulations had been below normal across much of southern Saskatchewan in April of 2016, but above normal rainfall in May improved the situation in most areas. The North Battleford, Prince Albert, and Meadow Lake areas however have however remained dry.
Although many reservoirs are not completely full, water supplies are expected to be adequate in 2016.
Without significant June rains, flows are expected to be below normal on the Saskatchewan River Basin in 2016 as the alpine snowpack was slightly below normal and irrigation diversions in southern Alberta have been above normal thus far. All water supply needs are expected to be met on the South Saskatchewan River in 2016 although intakes may need to be lowered to adapt to lower water levels at Lake Diefenbaker and on the South Saskatchewan River.
Inflows to the reservoirs in the Souris Basin were well below normal during spring runoff. While the reservoirs are not expected to fill in 2016, all water supply needs will be met.
All lakes within the Qu’Appelle system are expected to be within their desirable summer operating ranges in 2016 despite below normal snowmelt runoff, aside from Round Lake which will be below the desirable range as the federally owned control structure will not be operated.
The only current area of concern in terms of water supply is in the Weyburn region. Dry conditions in 2015 along with little to no snowmelt runoff in 2016 resulted in some surface water supplies being stressed in the area.
To read the full report go to Related Documents in the column to the right.