The weather pattern has become more active lately. However, drought continues to plague Colorado. Water storage and statewide snowpack remain well below average, and Colorado Springs Utilities said the community needs to take measures now to preserve the water currently in possession.
CSU said it is looking into implementing a Stage II restriction, which would limit watering to two days per week.
“You don’t go on to three days a week and expect to see a savings and expect to get benefit from that, and so that’s why we’re having to go right into the two days a week,” said Abby Ortega,CSU water rights administrative supervisor.
Ortega said while the recent snow has been beneficial with respect to local soil moisture, the snowpack and moisture relied upon to replenish reservoirs remains limited.
CSU said if restrictions are not implemented, water storage could drop below the designated risk tolerance threshold, which is enough water to supply the community for an entire year without additional inflow.
Ortega explained that with dry long-term forecasts in place, it is possible that water restrictions could extend beyond this summer.
“I think we should definitely expect that. I would say definitely through 2013, and it’s very likely in 2014,” said Ortega.
CSU said it is important for people to prepare for the restrictions and learn ways to use water more efficiently. CSU has many tips and tricks on its website to help homeowners conserve.
“Know that we’re not going into restrictions because we think it is fun or we don’t like what you all are doing. We’re all in this together, and we need to come together as a community to meet that goal,” said Ortega.
Stage II restrictions will go into effect on April 1. A homeowner’s first offense will be met with a warning notification. The second offense could warrant a fine near $100.