The Corps plans to evacuate about 3 million acre feet of water currently stored in the Missouri River Mainstem Reservoir System by March 1st – the start of the 2018 runoff season. (An acre foot is the amount of water it takes to cover an acre of land one foot deep.)
The Corps intends to release the water between now and the end of the year if weather conditions allow. The releases will benefit downstream uses and water intakes. An acre foot can supply a family of four with all the water they need for one year. Moving water out of the system will also create additional storage space to capture next year’s expected runoff from snowmelt and spring rains.