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Drought Conditions Leading to Lower Lake, Pond Levels and Drier Conditions Across City Areas

Severe drought conditions also increasing wildfire risks

The City of Boulder advises community members that they will see lower lake and pond levels and dry vegetation in city open space and park areas amid severe drought conditions. Because Boulder has a semi-arid climate, the municipal (treated water) supply was developed to anticipate periodic drought conditions. Drought Conditions Leading to Lower Lake, Pond Levels

At this time, there are no water use restrictions in place, and drinking water quality remains unaffected. Still, the city encourages the efficient use of water, such as irrigating between the hours of 9 p.m. and 9 a.m. and inspecting your sprinkler system for inefficiencies. Free sprinkler consultations for Boulder water customers are available from Resource Central. The city actively monitors water supplies and will inform residents of any changes.

Current drought conditions are affecting city open space and park lands by:

  • Contributing to lower lake and pond levels because of evaporation. Lower and stagnant water levels combined with higher water temperatures could adversely impact fish.
  • Increasing wildfire risk due to drying vegetation. Read six tips to protect yourself and our community from wildfires.
  • Limiting open space irrigation water availability as irrigation ditches with more senior (older) rights use available water. This can make it difficult to recharge lakes and supply water to farmers and ranchers who lease city agricultural lands.

While certain municipal water supplies are affected by the drought conditions, municipal water storage reservoirs — which are separate reservoirs than those that supply water to city open space properties — provide drinking water during drier conditions. The municipal drought plan provides guidance on when to implement water use restrictions.

As reported previously, the Boulder Reservoir is being drained over the next two months to allow for dam maintenance. The water released from the reservoir is being delivered for municipal and agricultural use.

  • For more information on how you can use water wisely, visit: https://bouldercolorado.gov/water/water-conservation
  • For more information on how the city monitors for drought conditions that affect the municipal water supply, visit: https://bouldercolorado.gov/water/drought-watch

Published: Sept. 3, 2020

Media Contacts:

Phillip Yates, Media Relations, 303-349-2438
Samantha Glavin, Media Relations, 720-667-9480