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Cascade Saves Record Amount of Water in Trust for Fish

On Jan. 17, 2015, Cascade Water Alliance made a permanent donation of 684,571 acre feet of water to the state's Trust Water Rights Program in which the water will stay in the White River for perpetuity.

The donation is the largest trust water donation in Washington state history – enough water to fill a football field 130 miles deep. This water donation will preserve instream flows and protect fish habitat in a stretch of the White River that flows through the Muckleshoot Tribal Reservation.

"We are honored to make this donation a reality," said Cascade Board Chair John Marchione, mayor of Redmond. "It's the culmination of our regional collaboration with our partners around Lake Tapps – the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, the Puyallup Tribe of Indians, the Lake Tapps homeowners and the four cities surrounding the lake – Auburn, Bonney Lake, Buckley and Sumner. Our work together helped make possible municipal water for the future, instream flows and a summer recreational lake."

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Lake Tapps White River Project

Lake Tapps White River Improvement Project Updates

Feb. 24, 2015 – The Lake Tapps-White River improvement projects that required the lake to be drawn down this winter are on track and expected to be completed in time to begin refill of the lake by mid-March as originally projected.

"Currently we are optimistic the lake will be full by Memorial Day, and if possible, earlier than that," said Chuck Clarke, CEO of Cascade Water Alliance.

The massive improvement projects – at an estimated cost to Cascade of $12-15 million – are being made to allow Cascade to operate the lake more reliably in the future. Crews are working 24 hours a day to get these projects completed so the lake is ready for refill in mid-March, as projected, barring any unanticipated delays.

The speed of the refill will be driven by the amount of precipitation –rainfall – and the available flow in the White River. Snowpack will not affect the refill, nor will the water right trust donation recently announced. The trust donation will instead ensure long term protection of availability of water to refill the lake and guarantees that no one else will be able to use that water other than in Lake Tapps and the White River.

Cascade will continue to keep the community informed of any change in the work as it continues to enhance this system with these improvements.

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Cascade Kicks Off Watersense New Homes Program

Cascade Watersense Programs

Saving water today means putting off major infrastructure investments further into the future. To that end, in addition to its other efficiency programs, Cascade recently created a partnership with Built Green to provide training and promotion of its WaterSense New Homes program. WaterSense certified homes use efficient products and fixtures, technologies to minimize wait times for hot water at showers and bathroom sinks, and emphasize good soil and appropriate plants in the landscape. A WaterSense home will use approximately 20 percent less water than a comparable home without these features and will see little change in the household water demand pattern from winter to summer.

This new program is just one of Cascade’s programs to help educate the public around wise water use. Another is Cascade’s irrigation learning lab at Lake Washington Institute of Technology (LWTech) which was used to train Eastside master recycler composter (MRC) volunteers in December on the basics of drip irrigation. Cascade is working with Seattle Tilth, the MRC program manager, to incorporate water content into the program so that MRC volunteers can promote water efficiency along with their recycling and composting. You too can save water and money with Cascade’s water efficiency programs.

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Cascade Gardener Classes

Cascade Water Alliance is offering free gardening classes through April again this year to help you have beautiful, healthy landscapes while using water efficiently. Cascade and its members — Bellevue, Issaquah, Kirkland, Redmond, Tukwila, Sammamish Plateau Water and Sewer District, and Skyway Water and Sewer District — are offering a variety of classes throughout members’ service areas. Check out Cascade’s website often for class updates, or sign-up to receive class updates via email.

To attend Cascade Gardener classes and sign up to receive updates, please visit the Cascade Gardener registration page. If you have questions about Cascade Gardener, please call 1-800-838-3006.

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