Fed regulators divvying up Oregon’s stored water

The U.S. Army corps of Engineers operates the dams

A waterway in Oregon as seen on the US Army Corps of Engineers website, March 21, 2016
A waterway in Oregon as seen on the US Army Corps of Engineers website, March 21, 2016

SALEM, Ore. (AP) – Federal regulators are divvying up the water stored behind 13 dams in Oregon’s Willamette Valley.

The Capital Press reports that the dams provide flood control during rainy winter months, but they also hold water that’s designated for use by irrigators, municipalities, industries, recreationists and fish during the spring and summer months.

The U.S. Army corps of Engineers, which operates the dams, wants to determine how much water is allocated for each use by mid-2017.

The agency recently started collecting information on water needs from the public and will also consider future irrigation demands calculated by Oregon officials.

Oregon Farm Bureau public policy council Mary Anne Nash says it’s too early to tell how much water will realistically be devoted to irrigation.

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