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John Wheeler, WDAY, Published September 26 2012

Weather Talk: Flows on Red’s tributaries have dropped significantly

River flows on the North Dakota tributaries to the Red River have dropped to nearly nothing.

Most of the water flowing between Fargo and Moorhead is coming from upstream reservoirs behind the White Rock Dam up the Bois de Sioux River and the Orwell Dam up the Otter Tail River. But with the drought now into its 13th month, these reservoirs are getting low. Sloughs and lakes that drain into these reservoirs are very low, meaning that without some rain our region will go into winter with water resources beginning to run low.

Spring snowmelt could help the situation, but unless the snowfall is extremely heavy, moisture content is usually not very much. There are a lot of “ifs” here, but without a change in the weather, it is a possibility that 2013 could bring water restrictions for the first time in years.


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