Water Supply Outlook for Alberta

July 2003

North Saskatchewan River Basin - Water Supply Forecasts

Natural runoff volumes for the March to September 2003 period are forecast to be near average for the North Saskatchewan River basin, ranging from 97 to 98% of average (Table 6a). Despite below-normal precipitation during June, earlier than usual snowmelt maintained last month's forecast of average volumes.

The July 1 forecasts for March through September at Edmonton and the Brazeau Reservoir are 26% higher than volumes recorded over the same time period last year, while the Bighorn Reservoir forecast is 5% lower than last year's volume. Current forecasted volumes are higher than those recorded in 2001 by 15 to 31%. Current forecasted values for the March to September period for the North Saskatchewan River at Edmonton would rank 45th lowest in 84-years of record (1912-95).

The first four months of the forecast period have been completed, with March-June 2003 recorded runoff volumes ranging from 105 to 112% of average. The volume recorded at the Bighorn Reservoir was third highest in 18 years of record. The remaining volume forecast, which is the March to September 2003 forecast minus the recorded volume to date, is available in Table 6b.

Note that the reasonable minimum volume for the March to September period published in last month's report for the Brazeau Reservoir was incorrect, and should have been 75% instead of 62%. This correction has been made in the online June report.

For technical enquires about this web page please contact Alberta Environment - Environmental Management Water Management Operations Branch at AENV-WebWS@gov.ab.ca