Director, Natural Resources Planning & Management
TMWA reviews and updates its “Water Resource Plan” (Plan) every five years—a document we are currently in the process of updating. The current draft version is the “2016-3035 Water Resource Plan,” which will replace the “2010-2030 Water Resource Plan.” Each Plan looks out 20 years in order to ensure both current and future needs are met. Why 20 years? Given the amount of time that’s often required to plan and construct major water supply projects, a 20-year planning horizon provides a reasonable window to incorporate potential changes and allow sufficient time for TMWA and the community to adapt. The five-year updates are useful in helping TMWA continually evaluate how its operations will address the economic and environmental conditions that may impact our area.
Customers who are truly interested in understanding how TMWA manages our community’s water resources will find almost all of what they are looking for in the Plan. Given the ongoing drought in our region, there has been a heightened interest throughout our community regarding the management of our water resources. People are understandably concerned about the short-term availability of water during the drought and the long-term sustainability of supplies as our community grows. The response to these concerns can be both complex and the subject of intense debate. The water plan provides understanding of where our water supplies are acquired, how they are managed, and how those supplies are delivered in drought and non-drought years. It can also help customers make informed decisions about their water use which can, in turn, help them with conservation and in reducing their water bills.
What’s in the Plan?
TMWA’s water resource plan lays the foundation for an understanding of the region’s water supply system and summarizes the history of municipal water supply in the Truckee Meadows up to and including the formation of TMWA. The plan also presents the following topics at some length:
- Legislative directives that modified regional water resource planning for the Truckee Meadows and led to the creation of the Western Regional Water Commission
- Current population trends and their potential impact on future water demands and resource requirements
- Uses the Truckee River water supplies during the historical 1987-1994 drought period as the basis for prudent water supply planning for the Truckee Meadows
- Outline of TMWA’s approach to conservation and tactics to be used in the event of drought
- Ongoing analysis of future water supply options to meet the region’s economic development
Though each section of the Plan can stand on its own, the pieces are interconnected much like TMWA’s water mains—which is why you will find topics such as water supplies, climate change and legal mandates discussed in several contexts within the various sections of the Plan.
How You Can Participate
Public involvement in the Plan-update process is important because we want the document to be of use to our customers and to help customers understand how their water system works. Your involvement and feedback will ensure the Plan is as meaningful and useful as possible.
You are invited to drop in to one of our remaining open houses (listed here) and talk one-on-one with TMWA staff members who will discuss the Plan update and answer any questions you may have. All customer comments and input will be collected and presented to the TMWA Board of Directors at a future Board meeting.
If you are unable to attend one of our open house sessions, feel free to share your comments and questions by calling our Natural Resources department at (775) 834-8049 or emailing email@example.com.
To see the approved 2016-2035 Water Resource Plan, click here.