Nampa & Meridian Irrigation District announce early end to irrigation season
The Treasure Valley’s largest irrigation district will shut down flows in its 500 miles of canals on September 5 marking an early end to an irrigation season that has suffered from a far-below-normal water supply, officials with the Nampa & Meridian Irrigation District announced today.
In a typical irrigation season with normal water supplies, NMID will deliver water until the first week of October. Last year, NMID flows were halted on October 4. But 2013 has been anything but typical with a meager snowpack and below normal precipitation.
The Nampa & Meridian Board of Directors made the decision at its regular board meeting Monday.
“It has been a tough water year for everyone. But the Board especially thanked our patrons for their hard work and close attention to water conservation that was one of the main reasons we have been able to extend the season as long as we have,” said Greg Curtis, NMID Water Superintendent. “Everyone has realized with the hot summer we have experienced that we needed to conserve where possible and I have heard very little complaining as we tried to meet everyone’s water needs.”
Water levels in the historic Ridenbaugh Canal will begin to decline quickly after the canal headgates are closed at the District’s Boise River diversion just upstream from Barber Park. But it could take two days before water levels drop in the furthermost reaches of the NMID system.
“The entire canal system should be nearly empty in four to five days after the water is shut off,” Curtis said.
The canal water cutoff means residential water users using pressurized urban irrigation systems managed by the District will need to switch to another water source such as a municipal system if they want to continue to irrigate lawns and landscaping, Curtis added.
The Nampa & Meridian Irrigation District is a water storage, conveyance and distribution system founded in 1904. The District supplies irrigation water to some 69,000 acres of farmland, residential and commercial lands, including pressurized irrigation for more than 15,000 individual parcels of land in Ada and Canyon counties.