Idaho Department of Water Resources (IDWR)

The Idaho Department of Water Resources traces its history back to 1895 when it was first established as the Office of State Engineer. With a director appointed by the governor, IDWR is the state’s premier ground and surface water regulatory agency. It oversees the Idaho Comprehensive State Water Plan. When IDWR and its Water Resource Board publish data about water resources, including the Spokane Valley-Rathdrum Prairie Aquifer, that information is backed by the most advanced hydrogeological studies currently available.

Idaho law authorizes the Water Resource Board within IDWR to conduct a Comprehensive Aquifer Planning Program across the state. By 2008, the Board had begun development of the ongoing Rathdrum Prairie Comprehensive Aquifer Management Plan (CAMP). Millions of federal dollars have been funneled into IDWR’s ground water flow and SVRP Aquifer studies. Among top priorities is the Spokane Valley Rathdrum Prairie Hydrologic Project that provides a scientific foundation to help Idaho and Washington cooperatively achieve numerical models with which to manage the SVRP Aquifer. The project uses a vast network of ground monitoring tools, including a number of test wells to compile information on: characterization, hydrologic readings, thermal modeling, water usage and surface water to ground water interactions.

In July 2020, IDWR confirmed that the two shallow Greenferry Water District wells south of the Spokane River are completed in permeable sand and gravel within the boundary of the Spokane Valley-Rathdrum Prairie Aquifer. The 28 acres for the proposed Bayshore Estates Subdivision adjacent to Greenferry wells is also astride the SVRP Aquifer.

Daniel Sturgis, who has provided invaluable information to Greensferry Stakeholders concerning the Greenferry Water and Sewer District wells, is an expert hydrogeologist with the IDWR office in the Idaho Panhandle region. He has spearheaded SVRP Aquifer boundary update studies in the Panhandle since 2017. He is now preparing his exhaustive work for peer review, after which it will be published.

Greensferry Stakeholders have great confidence in IDWR expertise and we are grateful for the timely information the agency has provided to HELP US SAVE OUR COMMUNITY WATER.