Save Our River Estuaries (SORE)

The goal of SORE is to raise public awareness about environmental and politcal issues relating to the recent proposal to extract water from the Albion and Gualala Rivers by a multinational consortium, and to bring our concerns to the state and federal agencies involved.

Statistical Information

A summary of useful calculations concerning water & waterbags.

Alaska Water Exports' proposal for Gualala

40 - 170 cubic feet per second --> 20,000 acre-feet per year (AFY)

(Data from 1/18/02 Independent Coast Observer)

Flow Rates

Using an average of 100 cubic feet per second:

time cubic feet cubic meters
second 100 3
minute 6,000 171
hour 360,000 10,286

At that rate, a bag holding 35,000 cubic meters would be filled in about 3.5 hours, which means they could fill about 7 waterbags per day.


These are the waterbags used by Nordic Water Supply ASA, one of the partners of Alaska Water Exports in the World Water SA consortium.

Unit English measures metric
length 650 ft 200 m
width 100 ft 33 m
depth 22 ft 7 m
volume 1,225,000 ft3 35,000 m3
capacity 9,200,000 gallons 35,000,000 liters
weight 38,000 short tons 35,000 metric tons
acre feet 28

All figures are approximate, and refer to a full waterbag.


Alaska Water Exports proposes to extract 20,000 acre feet per year (AFY) from the Gualala River, during the rainy season.
Since each bag holds approximately 28 acre feet, they would need 20,000 / 28 = ~700 bags per year.
If the rainy season is roughly 100 days long, that means about 7 bags per day.

That agrees very closely with the flow rate calculation above: 100 ft3/sec --> 7 bags per day.


watershed Gualala Albion
total acreage 191,145 28,000
average rainfall (feet per year) ~4 ~4
total AFY in watershed 764,580 112,000
company proposing export Alaska Water Exports World Water SA
AFY proposed for export 20,000 10,000
percent of total water 3% 9%

  • AFY = acre feet per year
  • average rainfall figures are obviously a rough estimate

    For comparison, The Sea Ranch Water Company is currently permitted to extract a maximum of 300 AFY from the Gualala River watershed (subject to certain restrictions).

    Please let me know if you have information on other allocated water rights in the Gualala or Albion watersheds. I've got a copy of the NCWAP draft (North Coast Water Assessment Program's "Gualala Watershed Synthesis Report"), but it doesn't have an AFY figure for the North Gualala Water Company.

    Equivalencies: Weights & Measures for water

    English measures

    [Metric is so much easier!]

    Compiled by

    (please send suggestions & corrections to):

    last updated: 2002-02-27