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A cold spring delays the fill up of Landsvirkjun’s reservoirs

July 6, 2015

Landsvirkjun has reviewed its water budget. The outlook for Landsvirkjun’s reservoirs was good at the end of last winter and there was heavy snow coverage in the Þjórsá area. However, the unusually cold and dry weather conditions experienced last spring have affected the water budget. The spring melting period in highland areas began late and has been slow. This is one of the worst spring periods experienced in Landsvirkjun’s reservoir history.

The yearly glacial ablation period is now ahead and the status of Landsvirkjun’s reservoirs by the end of the summer will be determined by the amount of meltwater accumulated. Ablation levels were above average last winter and snow coverage is still extensive in the highland areas, which could have a positive effect.

The late spring makes it unlikely that all of Landsvirkjun’s reservoirs will be full by the end of this summer. However, the Hálslón Reservoir is likely to fill up despite its current low level status. Revised estimates predict that there is a 25% chance that Blanda Reservoir will fill up and a small chance that reservoirs in the Þjórsá area will fill up. 

A reduction of the supply through short-term power contracts could be needed if reservoir levels are lower than expected in the coming autumn. However, all reservoirs do not need to reach full capacity for the water status to prove satisfactory. The weather conditions and ablation levels in the coming weeks and months will, amongst other things, control when reservoirs reach full capacity and spillover. The water levels in Landsvirkjun’s reservoirs are monitored and updated on a daily basis and can be viewed on Landsvirkjun’s website:

Original story in Icelandic:

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