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The City of Portland, Oregon

Nick Fish (In Memoriam)

City of Portland Commissioner

phone: 503-823-3589


1221 S.W. 4th, Room 240, Portland, OR 97204

In the summer of '15

July 28, 2015

There’s been a lot of talk about droughts recently. With much of the west coast experiencing dry spells and Portland’s recent heat waves, it’s no surprise that people are concerned about our water supply. 

Luckily, Portlanders have an abundance of water, thanks to our visionary Bull Run Watershed and our Columbia South Shore Well Field. Our reservoirs in the Bull Run rely on rain rather than snow – and Mt. Hood had a rainy year!

A century ago, Portlanders also faced a hot, dry summer. An editorial from The Oregonian revealed a glimpse into the past. In the summer of 1915, the average Portlander used 112 gallons of water per day, which was quite a bit less than people in other US cities. 

Today, the average Portlander uses 52 gallons per day at home – considerably less than a hundred years ago. We are fortunate to have conservation-minded citizens and our incredible water supply.

Check out the Water Bureau’s website to learn more about the summer of 1915, and about our great water sources.