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Idaho Aquifer Recharge More Than Doubles Water Year Goal

Idaho Department of Water Resources
The state has been fighting back against a steady decline in the Eastern Snake Plain Aquifer. Recharge efforts in 2017 and 2018 are improving that picture.

It’s been a year of good news for the Eastern Snake Plain Aquifer recharge program. The aquifer – which serves southern Idaho’s agricultural-rich Magic Valley and about 200,000 homes – is the subject of a strategic recharge project. 

Water is pumped back into the natural aquifer, with the goal of both refilling after dry years and building a surplus during wet years.

Now, water managers estimate they will double their annual recharge goal this year – crushing the amount they stashed away last year by more than 50 percent.

According to a press release, the Idaho Water Resource Board says that part of the success has come from their partnerships with canal companies and local irrigation districts. So the board voted to almost double the budget for how much is paid out to recharge partners, up to $4.7 million.

Find reporter Frankie Barnhill on Twitter @FABarnhill

Copyright 2018 Boise State Public Radio

Frankie Barnhill was the Senior Producer of Idaho Matters, Boise State Public Radio's daily show and podcast.

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