Water Supply Outlook for Alberta

April 2004

North Saskatchewan River Basin - Water Supply Forecasts

Natural runoff volumes for the March to September 2004 period are forecast to be below-average to much-below-average for the Bighorn Reservoir, and much-below-average for the Brazeau Reservoir and the North Saskatchewan River at Edmonton (Table 6a). Current forecasts in the basin range from 70 to 91 % of average. Current forecasted values for the March to September period for the North Saskatchewan River at Edmonton would rank 10th lowest in 91-years of record (1912-2001). The April 1 volume forecasts are 1 to 6% lower than last month's at the Brazeau Reservoir and Edmonton, and 1% higher at the Bighorn Reservoir. Forecasts are 7 to 16% lower than volumes recorded over the same time period last year.

The first month of the forecast period has been completed, with March 2004 recorded runoff volumes at Lake Abraham being above-average to much-above-average at 145% of average, while Edmonton and the Brazeau Reservoir recorded runoff which was 77 and 58% of average, respectively. Recorded volume data is preliminary, due to ice effects, and is subject to change. March volumes typically comprise a small portion of the March to September total. The remaining volume forecast, which is the March to September 2004 forecast minus the recorded volume to date, is available in Table 6b.

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