Wed, Aug 24|
Texas House Water Hearing • Finally Landowners to be heard!
Affected landowners from counties east of Austin have been invited to speak about how Vista Ridge (the San Antone Hose) and other mega-permits are threatening their water future. You can watch online and submit written comments. Please show up if you can. We expect a crowd, so arrive early.
Time & Location
Aug 24, 2022, 10:00 AM
Austin, 1100 Congress Ave., Austin, TX 78701, USA
About the Event
Water Hearing Notice here with lots of details: https://capitol.texas.gov/tlodocs/87R/schedules/html/C3902022082410001.HT
See more details here at LIV's News Page.
If we missed something, please call us at 512.213.4511 or shoot us an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
These are recommendations and background information from the non-profit Simsboro Aquifer Water Defense Fund:
We are not discouraging participation of any kind you choose, however. If you speak, make 15 copies of your address to hand in at the hearing, and that paper can be longer than you can cover in 3 minutes. You can also comment in writing online, without attending the hearing.
BOTTOM LINE, your comments can be as extensive or as brief as you choose, your willingness to take the time to comment is what counts, especially with the Committee.
If it's more efficient for you to just put in written comments, here's an easy way to do it and also support those of us who spend a lot of time on these issues and will continue working with the Legislature -- you can add more to this outline at your pleasure:
- Identify yourself and your location, your status as a landowner and/or well owner or interested citizen (with specific concerns about your well);
- Tell them you have great concerns that Texas groundwater policy has been going in the wrong direction and you are concerned, however you want to express that; and
- Tell them you hope the Committee with take the comments of the Lost Pines Groundwater District, and the Simsboro Aquifer Water Defense Fund very seriously, as well as the two well owners McKee and Rhodes who are speaking for so many other affected well owners.
For those who are interested, here is a brief "refresher" on Vista Ridge and other projects in Central Texas:
The Vista Ridge project is a massive 18-well project that is allowed to send more than 50,000 acre-feet/year (at least 16 billion gallons annually) to San Antonio from Burleson County.
Vista Ridge's pumping is split between two aquifer formations --- they can pump up to 15,000 AFY from the Carrizo formation, at the top of the Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer, and up to almost 41,000 AFY from the Simsboro formation, which is deeper underground in the Wilcox Group of the Carrizo-Wilcox.
Within six months of April 2020, when VR pumping began, household and livestock wells in Burleson and Lee counties, all of which are believed to be completed in the Carrizo Aquifer, began having their well pumps go dry --- water levels in their wells had dropped precipitously, and there could only be one explanation: Vista Ridge. It is very expensive to keep having to lower your pump, increase your pump size when you go deeper than your pump will lift water, or replace your well altogether.
As far as we know, wells in the Simsboro have not yet been affected. Simsboro wells are much scarcer than more shallow wells, but we believe that aquifer is targeted far beyond a sustainable level of pumping.
At a recent water "summit", Post Oak Savannah Groundwater Conservation District (Burleson and Milam counties) said reports of affected Milam County landowner wells in the Carrizo formation are starting to come in, in addition to the wells Vista Ridge has already damaged in Burleson and Lee counties.
A huge water project in the Simsboro to supply is the new Samsung facility in Taylor and other users, will come from 56 wells in Milam County, right across the Lee County line.
LCRA is still seeking 8 billion gallons per year from the Simsboro in Bastrop County.
Another joint groundwater project by the Alliance Regional Water Authority and the GBRA is under construction in Caldwell and Gonzales counties. Carrizo wells in southern Bastrop County are expected to be affected by the Caldwell County wells, which will be just over the county line. The Milam County project will pose a risk to some Lee County wells over time.
Recharge Water (the Company) has huge permits in the Simsboro in Lee and Bastrop counties, and the Gatehouse project is suing Lost Pines to get their Simsboro mega-permit reinstated in northeastern Lee County.
PS Folks, don't forget the extensive work done by LIV forcused especially on Vista Ridge -- The Hose! Visit our "Big Squeeze" water page for more than you might really want to know. :)