In a rare move for this time of year, the Edwards Aquifer Authority has declared Stage 3 water restrictions.
SAWS customers need not worry. A spokesperson tells TPR there is enough reserve water on hand at its Carrizo Aquifer storage site in southern Bexar County to not impose restrictions on its customers. But, SAWS itself will have to reduce its pumping out of the Edwards Aquifer by 35 percent.
SAWS, along with small municipalities like Universal City and Alamo Heights, are permit holders of the EAA. SAWS happens to be the largest permit holder.
Del Rio is fighting to keep water within its county lines from being shipped to San Antonio, but if a proposed plan goes through, Del Rio Mayor Roberto Fernandez is threatening legal action.
Citizens in the city are concerned that the plan to use 50,000 acre-feet of groundwater per year from Val Verde County will siphon away vital water that flows into its main water source, the San Felipe Springs.
Matagorda is just another small Texas town, but its bay is one of the key areas in the state for oyster harvesting and processing. It’s also where the mouth of the Colorado River feeds into the Gulf of Mexico, which creates a unique habitat for animals that survive within a careful balance of fresh and salt water.
The area has been hit hard in recent years by drought and the lack of rainfall has also taken its toll on the aquatic life, whose survival depends on the fresh water to lower the salinity levels of the bay, which is where shrimp hatch and oysters reproduce.
After hearing from state lawmakers, conservation groups and affected farmers, the LCRA board voted to raise the lake level threshold before any water is released to the rice farming irrigation areas of Texas.
The LCRA approved raising the lake level threshold from 850,000 acre feet to 1.1 million acre feet of water, and the board also asked the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to enforce mandatory water restrictions for people living along the Highland Lakes, limiting lawn watering to once a week.
The Lower Colorado River Authority has rescinded its request to block the flow of water headed downstream into Matagorda Bay from the Highland Lakes.
In the early part of October, the LCRA issued an emergency request from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, but this Tuesday they said recent rains that led to flooding in sections of Central Texas brought the lake levels up to a suitable level.
Gov. Rick Perry and a bipartisan group of state lawmakers are pushing for passage of Prop. 6, which would create a water fund to pay for water projects. Opponents say the money would be just another slush fund for Perry's cronies.
The League of Women Voters in Texas is urging a "yes" vote on Prop. 6, the constitutional amendment that will take $2 billion from the state's Rainy Day Fund to create a sort of bank account to fund water projects.
The League of Women Voters is a non-partisan group that works to get people to become active in their government and to get out the vote. It does not support one candidate or party over others, but does take positions on issues.
As we struggle to meet water resource challenges, what is the proper role that government should play regarding land development and other traditionally unregulated issues, in order to protect stream flows and the private property rights of landowners? All are potentially impacted by water marketing and increased withdrawals from aquifers. Stay tuned for the Texas Water Symposium, presented by the Hill Country Alliance, Schreiner University, and Texas Tech University, and recorded on the campus of Schreiner University in Kerrville.
Fronteras: Activists are calling on President Obama to take administrative action to stop deportations as the chance of Congress passing a reform bill this year wanes. Hundreds of vulnerable towns in New Mexico are trying to avoid running out of water during this drought. We’ll hear about the challenges foreign doctors face when they come to the U.S. Also, a report on an award by the Hopi Foundation in Arizona for people who work with victims of torture to help them heal.