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Published December 20, 2010
New Mexico Reservoir Levels(through 11/30/10)
Data Source(s): USDA-NRCS, National Water and Climate Center
Total reservoir storage in New Mexico decreased by only 9,900 acre-feet in November (Figure 2). Storage in the Navajo reservoir—New Mexico’s second largest reservoir—decreased by 18,300 acre-feet. Elephant Butte—New Mexico’s largest reservoir—increased by 20,400 acre-feet.
In water-related news, Albuquerque’s water utility is adopting new incentives in an attempt to meet the metro area’s water conservation goals (ABQJournal.com, December 9). The water utility’s new conservation efforts will include a $25 rebate for thermostats installed on swamp coolers. Adding a thermostat can save between 1,500 and 5,000 gallons per year. Other strategies include incentives for landscaping with less water demanding plants.
The map gives a representation of current storage levels for reservoirs in New Mexico. Reservoir locations are numbered within the blue circles on the map, corresponding to the reservoirs listed in the table. The cup next to each reservoir shows the current storage level (blue fill) as a percent of total capacity. Note that while the size of each cup varies with the size of the reservoir, these are representational and not to scale. Each cup also represents last year’s storage level (dotted line) and the 1971–2000 reservoir average (red line).
The table details more exactly the current capacity level (listed as a percent of maximum storage). Current and maximum storage levels are given in thousands of acre-feet for each reservoir. One acre-foot is the volume of water sufficient to cover an acre of land to a depth of 1 foot (approximately 325,851 gallons). On average, 1 acre-foot of water is enough to meet the demands of 4 people for a year. The last column of the table list an increase or decrease in storage since last month. A line indicates no change.
These data are based on reservoir reports updated monthly by the National Water and Climate Center of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS). For additional information, contact Wayne Sleep, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Portions of the information provided in this figure can be accessed at the NRCS website:
Southwest Climate Outlook Staff
- Michael Crimmins, UA Extension Specialist
- Stephanie Doster, Institute of the Environment Editor
- Dan Ferguson, CLIMAS Program Director
- Gregg Garfin, Founding Editor, Institute of the Environment
- Zack Guido, CLIMAS Associate Staff Scientist
- Gigi Owen, CLIMAS Assistant Staff Scientist
- Nancy J. Selover, Arizona State Climatologist
- Jessica Swetish, CLIMAS Publications Assistant
Please direct your Southwest Climate Outlook comments and suggestions to Zack Guido.
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