CTWC: Organization Says It's Time to Rethink Management of State's Dwindling Water Supplies or Consequences Could be Severe

Jan 15, 2015, 10:00 ET from Central Texas Water Coalition (CTWC)

AUSTIN, Texas, Jan. 15, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- With most of the state gripped by a historic drought, the resulting signs and responses point to near desperation. As climatologists fear the worst, lakes in north Texas are at their lowest levels ever, west Texas communities have feared their water supplies were down to only a few months, and central Texas water reservoirs are at record lows threatening the water supply for one of the fastest growing regions in the country. One Texas city is recycling wastewater for personal consumption and has even resorted to cloud seeding in an attempt to induce rain. The threat to the state's water supply is real. The state's water supply, which has helped make the Texas economy the envy of the nation, is disappearing and taking with it drinking water, jobs and tax revenues needed for schools and local governments.

Citing dwindling water supplies in what may become the worst drought in the region's history, the Central Texas Water Coalition (CTWC) says it's time for the state to adopt a new mind-set in managing its water supplies. In calling for a new approach to water management, the organization cited the economic devastation of the current drought combined with the effect of past water management decisions on Lakes Travis and Buchanan, the primary water sources for the region's 1.5 million residents, as examples of why change is essential. The coalition is supporting recommendations currently being considered by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) that would limit the "open" or unlimited water releases from Lakes Travis and Buchanan to flood rice fields in South Texas. A proposal to increase the trigger points for releases to rice farmers has been sent by the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) to the TCEQ, the entity responsible for managing the state's water plan.

Jo Karr Tedder, president of the CTWC, says it is important to understand that a lack of rainfall is not the only reason for the water crisis gripping the Central Texas region. Tedder says, "Past water management policies have allowed these key lakes to be devastated…" Click Here to Download Full Press Release.

Link to Infographic on Lake Levels and Inflow History.


SOURCE Central Texas Water Coalition (CTWC)