As we go into the summer months in Texas, it is not only a time of heat, but often drought conditions. While we may not necessarily have an immediate problem, we must be conscious of any potential issues and be good stewards, taking care of what we do have.
I am not an extreme conservationist, but I do believe in protecting our resources, water being most precious.
Recently, I attended a wonderful event at our Wise County Fairgrounds, where the Upper Trinity Groundwater District provided a grant to install a Rainwater Harvesting System, basically a 65,000 gallon barrel, which collects rainwater from some of the larger barns and buildings. This water can then be filtered and used for a variety of things, helping lessen any potential strain on the city well system.
Also, at the event, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Office in Wise County, was there to provide some wonderful resources, we can all use. Instead of telling you about them, I just want to give you some brief highlights and links to these resources. Besides, they can explain this better than I can.
As a realtor, I have seen a lot of growth in the past couple of years, which is a cause for real concern. There are already parts of our area where water is a big concern, simply because we have been in drought seasons more than not in the past several years. To give you a brief idea of what I am talking about, let me explain.
Large areas such as cities and towns, and even some communities, may have a public or commercial well system. These systems rely on a variety of resources, providing water for their citizens. Some get it from area lakes, others have huge wells. But the cost of maintenance and getting the water to the consumer is always an issue. Some of the towns in my area, often have 'boil water' notices because of aging systems, or breakdowns. Fixing these systems are not always an easy fix, because of the financial burdens on the cities.
Many people in rural areas rely solely on wells. Many wells have a 'recharge' rate, which means that they are not always down into an unending supply of water. They are often drilled into a 'pool' of sorts, and as long as rain comes, it can filter down into that pool and the end-use will have water. But in drought seasons, the pool may not refill quickly or properly. Or if the pool is connected to an underground spring, the spring may not refill quickly enough when the well experiences high usage. This alone is one reason not to use your well to fill a large pool. There are places to buy large amounts of water that can be delivered and not put the stress on your well system.
One of my clients had a regulator on his well that cut off at a specific time of day. This allowed the underground pool to recharge or refill, and they could not use the water during that time. They learned how to work around it, but it was better than the well going dry because they just continued to use it without regard.
There are areas in this part of Texas where the wells have gone dry, and other areas where there is just no water under that particular piece of land. I personally had a situation where a customer, who wanted a 20-acre tract of land, contacted a well digger only to find out water was 'spotty' in that area. So, they decided to dig a test well before they even bought the property, just to make sure they had water. It was an expensive endeavor, costing them over $3,500. They were able to move forward with the purchase because luckily, they did find water. However, the area they were in had another landowner who has no water. just a short distance away.
This, among many other reasons, is why I tend to be a bit passionate about this. Water is not a never-ending resource in Texas, like in times past. We have to be good stewards of it.
Here are a few links with resources that will help you navigate and protect our water resources.
Water for the future, starting now Because Texas enjoys a vibrant economy and continued population growth, ensuring we have enough water for current and future Texans remains a top priority in the state....Cities and counties may also offer planting guides and information about conserving water resources through careful landscape selection and watering practices....Excess water pressure can cause significant water loss.
Click below to see the entire brochure.
Water Well Basics
Texas landowners are responsible for managing the drinking water from their private wells. To protect your water supply, you need to keep records on each well, manage potential sources of contamination, and test your water at least once a year.
Protect Your Water Well During Drought
During severe droughts, people rely heavily on groundwater—the water held underground in aquifers. An aquifer can become depleted when more water is pumped out of it than is replenished by rainfall or other water sources. If the water level drops below the point of your pump intake, the pump could be damaged.
For other resources on this subject go to Texas Well Owners Network at Fact Sheets - TWON (tamu.edu)
Each week the Texas Water Development Board posts information on drought conditions, as well as a lot of other great information on Texas waterways.
Follow them on Facebook, then check out their website so you can be in the know for all things Texas Water.
(20+) Texas Water Development Board | Facebook
Finally, if you are looking to purchase land, or just want to understand more about the efforts in this area, be sure to check out UTGCD.
The Upper Trinity Groundwater Conservation District exists to help protect and conserve water within the Upper Trinity Aquifer. Through registration of wells, education and outreach to citizens, and cooperation with local government, we seek to allow for accessible and clean water for generations to come. Our region includes Montague, Wise, Parker, and Hood counties. We aim to respect and protect the rights of landowners with their groundwater, as well as the environment and ecosystem. Please call, email, or visit with us; we look forward to working with you!
Home - Upper Trinity Groundwater Conservation District (uppertrinitygcd.com)
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