Klamath Falls, Ore. – Water could soon be shut off to farmers in the Klamath Basin, triggering major financial losses.
Klamath Project farmers began hiring, and ordering supplies based on Bureau of Reclamation forecasts of 140,000 acre feet of water.
Gene Souza of the Klamath Irrigation District says that water allocation has changed. “We’ve been told by Reclamation that that supply has been reduced by about 60,000 acre feet, and so we’re looking at 80,000 acre feet for the entire year.”
Souza believes the cutback will lead to an early shutoff of water. “Based on the information that I have from Reclamation, we could be seeing a cutoff for Klamath Irrigation District as soon as June 15th.”
Souza believes an early shutoff could be financially devastating to the Klamath Basin. “Hundreds of millions of dollars in workers, in restaurants, in equipment, transportation, fuel, everything that keeps this basin going is at risk right now.”
The K.I.D. board of directors is scheduled to meet Thursday.
Some assistance is available for land idling, and groundwater pumping through the Klamath Project Drought Response Agency.
You’ll find a link to more information here: www.klamathwaterbank.com
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970’s. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.Lyle’s job history is quite colorful.
He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90’s as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience.
“The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story”.
When he’s not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.