Cheney Reservoir level raising questions about conservation

Concerns about the level of Cheney Reservoir haven’t been an issue since 2013, but those concerns are on the table again due to the current drought.
Published: May. 31, 2023 at 11:09 PM CDT
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SEDGWICK COUNTY, Kan. (KWCH) - Concerns about the level of Cheney Reservoir haven’t been an issue since the summer of 2013, but those concerns are on the table again due to the current drought.

Wichita get about 60% of its water from Cheney Reservoir and it’s level guides the city’s drought response plan, which does affect Wichita water customers. In April, Cheney was 86% full. As of Wednesday, May 31, the level is about 77%, as it was 10 years ago. For the City of Wichita to start imposing restrictions, the level has to reach a 12-month average of 69%.

If the city is required to impose water restrictions, turning the water off isn’t necessarily a bad idea, Brady Nursery Owner Cathy Brady explained.

“You don’t need to run your sprinkler every day,” she said.

If you do, no only are you wasting water, it can hurt what you’re trying to help.

“When you’re running [your sprinkler system] all the time, you’re making your lawn, your trees, your shrubs, you’re making them weak,” Brady said.

So, if the time comes for mandatory conservation, it’s better to be prepared now.

“They have these rain sensors you can put on a sprinkler system and it decides if the sprinkler’s gonna come on that day, and that’s the best thing,” Brady said. “It saves water, saves electricity.”