DROUGHT PUMPING RATE
WE HAVE ONE JOB: YOUR WATER
Due to low flows and poor winter runoff, Western Colorado’s historically exceptional drought conditions have prompted us to make changes in your water.
On June 10th, 2021 Ute Water began pumping from a secondary source, the Colorado River, to blend with water from the Plateau Creek watershed, the District’s primary water source. The purpose of blending water from the two sources is to preserve water quality while slowing down the draw-down of reservoirs, in turn supplementing water demand.
This is the first time since the District was formed 65 years ago that water from the Colorado River has been utilized to supplement demand due to drought conditions.
What does this mean for your water? A few things.
IMPACT ON WATER QUALITY
Utilizing a second source of water means there will be noticeable changes in water quality, specifically hardness. You may notice spots on dishes, or white build-up on swamp cooler pads, water heaters, fixtures, and more. We urge all residents not to be alarmed, this water is safe to drink and consume, simply leaving behind calcium carbonate as it evaporates. Adding vinegar and other products to dishwashers aids in reducing spots on dishes. There are products available to help mitigate the build-up on evaporative cooler pads as well.
Customers can now view the District's Water Quality Dashboard for specific information about current water quality. The dashboard information is updated weekly information and is reflective of the previous week's water quality.
IMPACT ON BILLING RATES
To offset the operational costs associated with pumping water from the Colorado River, a minimal 2% Drought Pumping Rate has been added to District customer’s monthly water bills. For the average household, this adds around 47 cents to their monthly bill.
This rate will cover increased use in electricity, increased costs in chemicals to treat Colorado River water, and maintenance costs from using the pump stations. These rates will remain on customer’s bills until the District has recouped these costs and is no longer pumping from the Colorado River, which is unknown at this time.
The calculators below only reflect rate impacts for meters 1-inch and smaller. Customers with meters over 1-inch should contact the District at (970) 242-7491.
SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL CUSTOMERS
WHAT YOU CAN DO
During the drought season, reducing your impact through diligent and responsible water usage gains even more importance.
80% of an individual's water consumption is used for outdoor watering this time of year. Following the suggested outdoor watering schedule developed for Mesa County reduces the length and frequency of water cycles, which not only helps conserve water, but also helps landscapes adapt better to drought climates.
Find more helpful tips, resources, education, and information on how you can reduce your use through our collaborative committee, Drought Response Information Project (DRIP).