The future of the Treasure Valley's water storage

Posted at 9:58 PM, Jul 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-20 23:59:39-04

This year's spring runoff is proof that when Southwest Idaho has a long hard winter, the area's rivers and streams are flowing high and fast. The Boise River Basin's reservoir system was built to hold and control water. But with our growing population, is it enough?

The Boise River has been the life line to the Treasure Valley for hundreds of years. But as more and more people settled along its banks, and farmers started farming dry and barren land, it was apparent the use of its valuable resource would become essential to the valley's growth. Roger Batt with the Treasure Valley Water Users Association simply says that without the water from the Boise River, most of us wouldn't be here today.
"If we didn't have this irrigation and the storage and capacity, this place would be a desert," explained Rodger Batt.

As Executive Director of the T.V.W.U.A., Roger Batt knows the importance of talking about the need for additional storage, right now.

"We talk about the population expanding like it's supposed to do in the next thirty years, it only makes sense to have additional storage in the valley," said Batt.

So where would it be? Batt thinks a place on the north and middle fork of the Boise River called Twin Springs should be a candidate for a new reservoir. Interestingly, Twin Springs was talked about way back in the 1930's as a location for the Boise Basin's second reservoir. Arrowrock, of course, being the first. But that never happened, and Anderson Reservoir upstream of the south fork of the Boise became the number two reservoir. But building a new reservoir doesn't happen overnight, and the cost is more than you can imagine. Regardless, Roger Batt remains optimistic it will happen someday.

"Yes, I do, and that's just me," said Batt. "But I also know what demands are going to be and we need to have the foresight and that makes Idaho great, we have a lot of foresight."