Experts say Arizona drought won’t affect Tucson’s water supply

Experts on drought

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Right now, a majority of Arizona is experiencing a severe drought, so bad that experts say it’s the worst on record.

The lack of rain this monsoon and record-breaking temperatures have placed most of Arizona in extreme drought.

“When you put both of those things together you get more evaporation out of water bodies like rivers and streams,” said University of Arizona Assistant Environmental Professor, Mike Bogan.

Bogan said the drought hasn’t affected the Santa Cruz water flow.

“If you look at natural water stream like Sabino Canyon you can see pretty severe impacts of the drought we’re in right now. The wildlife is struggling. But the Santa Cruz is independent from these droughts because the water comes from our municipal treated waste water,” said Bogan.

The Santa Cruz river has served as a refuge during this drought. Bogan said it’s stable and it wouldn’t affect Tucson’s water supply for at least another 50 years.

“These droughts that we have this year are more of a concern for that wildlife than it is for the city,” Bogan added.

Meanwhile, Tucson Water is working on various projects to conserve water through thousands of miles of pipes.

“We’re undertaking a process to cut our loss of water through leaks by half. We just received a $250 thousand grant to help us with technology and equipment,” said James MacAdam, Tucson Water Superintendent.

The city also has a green storm infrastructure fund designed to build facilities that capture storm water from roadways, set to be used for irrigations and vegetations.

Experts recommend having drought tolerant landscapes as an alternative to help conserve water.

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