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New water flowing in the Santa Cruz River

Posted at 4:47 PM, Nov 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-03 20:56:00-04

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN9) — For just the second time in thirty years, new water is flowing into the Santa Cruz River.

“That’s a big deal because for years and years we took water out of the river and now we are putting it back in,” said University of Arizona Assistant Professor of Natural resources Michael Bogan.

Bogan says the environment is already reacting to the new supply of water.

“Certainly, toads they are one of the first to take advantage of water,” he said, “We are expecting dragon flies and aquatic insects to show up soon.”

The Irvington Outfall site at I-19 and Irvington is part of the Santa Cruz River Heritage project already adding millions of gallons of water daily at points near downtown Tucson.

“That water has been treated above and beyond federal standards for contaminants in the water,” said Tucson Water Spokesperson Natalie DeRoock.

“It replenishes the aquifer and makes sure Tucson has essential water in the savings bank for our future. It is our most precious resource and we want to make sure we have water for future generations,” she said.

Bogan says the project will not only be a boost for wildlife and water supplies, but the economy as well.

“There is the aesthetic value. Property values going up because people want to recreate around water bodies,” he said.