Utah Board of Water Resources celebrates its 75th anniversary

Published 11-01-22

Happy 75th anniversary to us!

💦 Seventy-five years

💦 1,530 projects

💦 $988M in Board Funding

From dam development and upgrades, to water data collection and planning, and hundreds of critical projects in between, we’ve worked hard to protect Utah’s water. Now more than ever, we’re committed to collaboration with the water community to address the challenges ahead of us. We celebrate these many accomplishments, but we also celebrate you, Utahns, for your efforts to conserve and your continued support!

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Image of Utah Division Of Water Resources logo and Flip Blitz logo

Communities Across the State Converting Over 120,000 sq. ft of Thirsty Grass to Drought-Resistant Landscapes

Published 05-18-22

The Utah Division of Water Resources, water districts, municipalities and one university will convert 120,441 sq. ft of grassy park strips and other landscapes to waterwise landscapes on May 19. This is the second “Flip Blitz,” a campaign that aims to raise awareness about how small landscape changes can make a big difference. Over 85% of the conversions will take place in Washington County alone.

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Weekly Lawn Watering Guide now recommending at least “one irrigation per week” for the entire state

Published 05-16-22

Is it time to turn the sprinklers on? Check the Utah Division of Water Resources’ Weekly Lawn Watering Guide and find out. The guide is posted every Friday on the division’s Facebook page and website during irrigation season to help Utahns target water needs in each county. Utah has been in drought eight out of the last 10 years. We encourage all residents to check with their local water provider for restrictions. 

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$250 Million for the Installation of Secondary Meters Will Fast-Track Water Conservation Efforts

Published 04-05-22

Application period runs April 1-May 15 for secondary water providers

SALT LAKE CITY (April 5, 2022) – Grant funds allocated during the past legislative session for metering secondary water (untreated water for irrigation) are now available. HB242 allocated $250 million to help secondary water providers accelerate meter installation. Areas that have installed secondary meters have seen a reduction in water use by about 20-30%. The Division of Water Resources will administer the program, with the initial application period running April 1-May 15. 

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Water Resources “Blitzes” park strips to show Utahns how to save thousands of gallons

Published 09-21-21

SALT LAKE CITY (Sept. 20, 2021) – The Utah Division of Water Resources will convert four grassy park strips to lush but water-wise landscapes to launch “Flip Blitz,” a campaign that aims to raise awareness about how small landscape changes can make a big difference. The campaign kicks off Tuesday, Sept. 21 at 13218 S Herriman Rose Blvd, Herriman, Utah 84096 at 9 a.m.

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Gov. Cox announces conservation focus areas

Published 07-29-21

At a press conference July 29, Gov. Spencer Cox was joined by water districts and St. George Mayor Michele Randall to highlight water-saving efforts underway around the state and announce conservation program expansions. Although drought conditions are discouraging, many Utahns are taking water-saving actions at their homes, businesses, communities, and industries.

Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District was the first in the state to offer rebates for turf park strip conversions with the popular “Flip Your Strip” program. Today, Central Utah Water Conservancy District and Weber Basin Water Conservancy District also launched turf removal programs designed to incentivize homeowners to remove grass that doesn’t serve an active purpose. (Visit UtahWaterSavers.com to find out about programs and rebates in your area.)

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Great Salt Lake reaches historic low

Published 07-24-21

According to the USGS, the southern portion of the Great Salt Lake is at a new historic low, with average daily water levels dropping about an inch below the previous record set in 1963, according to U.S. Geological Survey information collected at the SaltAir gauge location.  

“Based on current trends and historical data, the USGS anticipates water levels may decline an additional foot over the next several months,” said USGS Utah Water Science Center data chief Ryan Rowland. “This information is critical in helping resource managers make informed decisions on Great Salt Lake resources. You can’t manage what you don’t measure.” 

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Great Salt Lake nears historic low

Published 07-03-21

Reports that the Great Salt Lake has dropped below its historic low elevation of 4,191.35 are premature. The Utah Division of Water Resources is following the lake’s elevation closely and expects it will drop below that point in the coming days.

Conditions like wind, inflow and evaporation can cause the lake’s elevation to fluctuate. Sometimes those swings are extreme. To account for this, the division evaluates daily averages rather than the instantaneous readings recorded every 15-minutes. Taking this approach provides a more accurate reading rather than a single snapshot in time.

This pending milestone is concerning. The value of the Great Salt Lake to the state of Utah is significant as it provides economic, environmental and ecological benefits. Utah is growing faster than any other state in the country, and water demand is at an all-time high. Coordination and cooperation are key to solving this unique challenge. It’s important that we maintain a unified front between policy leaders, industry, wildlife and all stakeholders to balance the state’s growth with the health of the lake.

More information

New “Drought Watering Guide” replaces traditional guide

Published 06-11-21

Extreme drought continues to plague the state, so the Utah Division of Water Resources has replaced its traditional lawn watering guide with an “Extreme Drought Watering Guide” to reflect drought actions. The “Drought Watering Guide” replaces the popular Weekly Lawn Watering Guide (we hope temporarily) and focuses on “survival watering.” While extreme drought conditions exist, the guide will focus on minimal watering to keep grass alive: two times a week in northern Utah and three times a week in southern Utah. 

With 60% of residential water use applied to outdoor landscapes, Utahns are asked to look for ways to reduce their use. Eliminating just one watering can save about 3,000 gallons for the average quarter-acre Utah yard. More drought actions and water-saving tips can be found at slowtheflow.org 

Using water efficiently is always the best practice and saves money. But during extreme drought, it’s critical to help stretch the water supply. 

Gov. Cox announces third drought Executive Order, fireworks ban on state lands

Published 06-09-21

SALT LAKE CITY (June 8, 2021) – Utah Gov. Spencer J. Cox issued another executive order further restricting water use at state facilities. He also announced a prohibition on fireworks for all state and unincorporated lands.

“All indicators show this could be the worst drought year on record,” Gov. Cox said. “Utah state government is leading the way by cutting back on water use at all state facilities, but all of us — from private businesses to local governments to individuals — need to conserve water now more than ever.” 

Cox announced Executive Order 2021-10, which requires lawn watering at some state facilities to be reduced to two days per week. A previous order allowed three days per week.

He also announced that the State Forester and the Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands issued an order banning fireworks on all state and unincorporated private lands. This order is effective today. The same goes for SITLA lands: No fireworks will be allowed on SITLA lands this summer.

Cox was joined by Utah Department of Agriculture and Food Commissioner Craig Buttars, who described the effect the extreme drought is having on agribusiness, and Deputy Director for Division of Water Resources Candice Hasenyager, who discussed the impact on the state’s waterways. Also attending were Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson, Jamie Barnes, interim director of Forestry, Fire and State Lands, and Jeff Rassmussen, director of the Division of Parks and Recreation.

Executive Order