New USBR model run suggests 2021 is on track to be the second-worst year in history for the Colorado River’s reservoirs

Colorado River reservoirs forecast to drop 5 million acre feet this year

The latest US Bureau of Reclamation “24-month study” – the monthly update to projected reservoir storage on the Colorado River – shows the bottom dropping out of Lake Powell inflows after a starkly dry April.

With inflows down a million acre feet from the April version of the study, the Bureau is now projecting total storage in Lake Mead and Lake Powell will drop 5.6 million acre feet this year. That is the second-largest one-year drop in history, behind 2002’s 7.4 million acre feet.


  1. I am glad to see the units have been corrected, but sad that the forecast looks much worse.

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