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Summary of Strategy Options Discussion (from Nov. 13, 2023 workshop)

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In a culminating point in the Plan for Water (PFW) process, the NID Board of Directors have identified options to model and further research as they look to identify strategies to ensure water is available to customers in the future.

The Nov. 13 workshop focused on Stage 10, with the purpose of evaluating different strategies that benefit the District’s water supply. This includes the effort needed for implementation and the anticipated improvement in either demand reduction, increased supply, or improvement to watershed health.

For the workshop, the NID Engineering Department staff report noted that “some strategies are intended to provide a reduction of predicted unmet demand, while other strategies support one or more of the Board’s strategic priorities. This is not an exhaustive list and it is intended to allow for the Board and the public to provide input on each strategy and the evaluation categories.”

Presented were some 15 options, including for operations, such as canal automation and metered raw water accounts; watershed management; canal improvements, like encasing and/or lining; and storage augmentation, such as dredging sediment from reservoirs and developing new storage.

Directors discussed each option presented in a spreadsheet, considering cost, change in acre-feet with implementation, environmental impacts, operational impacts, feasibility, risk, and customer impacts. Each of these would reduce demands and/or increase supplies.

Moving forward, Directors indicated that they would like the following options to be further researched and considered:

  • Meadow restoration and forest management (no modeling; refer to the Watershed Management Plan)
  • Abandonment of low-performing canals (no modeling; refer to Raw Water Master Plan)  
  • Renegotiation to reduce instream flow requirements for FERC License 
  • Water transfers to sell surplus water out of district

Directors requested the following options be modeled:

  • Extending the water year
  • Rollins increase in storage by raising the dam
  • Develop new storage facility located between Rollins and Combie (Centennial)

Further study of the options would include drought contingency measures, calculations with a 20 percent conservation, and possible partnerships with local, state and federal organizations and agencies.

The goal is to detail potential actions for water solutions both in the short-term and long-term.

Read the specifics; click here to read the Initial Strategy Option Spreadsheet that identifies various options for reducing demands and increasing supplies for the Board to consider.


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