Regional water planners have drafted a revised blueprint for meeting the water needs of Central Texas and neighboring counties for the next 50 years, and they are seeking your opinion on the draft.
Although the plan has many good features and recommends the proactive practices of water conservation and drought response, in its current form it proposes costly water infrastructure projects in excess of water needs and pulls back on previous water conservation recommendations. The plan also fails to address environmental water needs to protect and preserve fish and wildlife habitat in a substantive way.
Water is essential for both people and the environment, but the overbuilding of water projects has tremendous financial, social, and environmental costs. The plan should carefully assess which water projects are appropriate and then recommend projects that meet water shortages. Additional water projects beyond the “needs or shortages” should not be recommended. Overplanning leads to overbuilding that could undermine efforts to conserve and use water more efficiently across the region.
Water conservation is a big part of the Region K plan but the recommendations in the plan are not as strong they were in previous plans. With a growing population and intense droughts, we need to do more on conservation, not less. Texans always need to conserve our precious water resources.
Fish and wildlife need water to survive too, and the regional water planning process is not complete without allocating a piece of the pie to support environmental needs. The planning process needs to create a complete plan by planning for people AND the environment.
Ask water planners to include more water conservation, water for the environment and less water infrastructure in our regional water plan!
Let’s make sure that water planners know that care about how your water supply is managed. We are all in this together.