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Despite Heavy Rains, San Diego Water Restrictions May Persist

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December's heavy rains in San Diego have raised hopes that irrigation restrictions could be eased or even lifted this coming summer. But don't count on it.

Since June, 2009, the city has been under a drought alert with mandatory restrictions. Authorities warn those restrictions may not soon be lifted.

"Nobody should be lulled into complacency," said Dennis Cushman, San Diego Water Authority Assistant General Manager.

Cushman explained that just a small fraction of San Diego's water supply comes from rain and local reservoirs. "We might have a good year for rainfall here, but local rainfall in San Diego County only accounts for between 5-7 per cent of all the water we use," he said.

The Colorado River provides about 50 per cent of San Diego's supply. Snowpack levels in the Colorado River Basin are currently 136 per cent of average, but the next few months are typically the most important for establishing potential water supply.

Source: Water Efficiency Watch

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