Opponents outnumber supporters at Marvin Nichols hearing

News-Journal.com, April 30, 2014

A tide of sign-toting landowners and business owners rose against a proposed Northeast Texas lake Tuesday at the first of two public hearings on whether the Marvin Nichols Reservoir should remain in the state water plan.

Tuesday’s hearing, and a companion event today in Arlington, begin the final chapter in a 14-year dispute between the Northeast Texas Water Planning Region, or Region D, and North Central Texas water planners led by the North Texas Municipal Water District that wants to build the reservoir.

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Celebrate Earth Day! Join the conversation about Keeping Rivers Flowing

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April 22, 2014

What makes our planet Earth what it is? Water, of course! Why not top off your Earth Day festivities by reserving your spot to participate in the conversation about how to Keep Rivers Flowing? Sign up now to join us from 2:00-3:00 pm CDT on April 30th for the first webinar installment in a FREE […]

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Brazos Watermaster Hotly Contested

Texas Tribune, April 20, 2014

For decades, water wars have been rare in East Texas, where annual rainfall can be twice that of West Texas. But as drought keeps its grip on the entire state, the Brazos River is bucking that trend, forcing regulators to scrutinize its users in ways that could have implications for many in-demand Texas waterways.

The Brazos’ lower basin, which flows from west of Fort Worth through Waco and down to the Gulf Coast, has been the subject of some of the most contentious water fights of the last few years. In response, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality decided last week to appoint a watermaster to the lower Brazos basin — an overseer who will interact daily with river users like farmers and manufacturers and require them to report their water use in real time.

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Group readies for reservoir dispute

News-Journal.com, April 17, 2014

The dispute between Region C and Region D water planning groups over the proposed Marvin Nichols Reservoir has simmered for years, but is set to enter a new phase by the end of the month with public hearings in both regions.

State water planners are seeking public input on a plan to build a reservoir in Northeast Texas.

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You Can’t Say They Don’t Care What You Think – Public Input on HB 4

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March 28, 2014

Last November Texas voters overwhelming approved Proposition 6 – a proposed state constitutional amendment that created a new state water fund for water projects in the state water plan. Approval of “Prop 6” indirectly transferred $2 billion from the state’s “rainy day” fund into this new State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT) to provide […]

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San Antonio Water System Backpedals on Right Choice – Still Considering Groundwater Importation Project

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March 14, 2014

Last month, the Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club praised staff at the San Antonio Water System (SAWS) for recommending to their Board that the focus of future water supplies for the city should rest on nearby brackish groundwater, rather than the importation of fresh groundwater from locations distant of the city.    Unfortunately, the […]

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Water Cost Savings Seen

San Antonio Express News, February 7, 2014

SAN ANTONIO — The San Antonio Water System will ask its board of directors to abandon proposals to pipe in billions of gallons of water from outside the area, its CEO confirmed Thursday, and instead expand a desalination plant.

SAWS will begin construction this year on a facility to desalinate brackish water in southern Bexar County that could work in conjunction with CPS Energy, which wants to add a natural-gas-powered plant, SAWS CEO Robert Puente said.

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Below the Surface

Texas Monthly, February 4, 2014

THE LEGISLATURE WAS LOOKING IN THE WRONG PLACE WHEN IT TRIED TO SOLVE THE STATE’S WATER CRISIS.

When Governor Rick Perry signed a landmark water-funding bill last May, he looked and sounded like a confident leader. “This is making history,” he said about the legislation, which would divert $2 billion of the state’s burgeoning oil-and-gas severance taxes toward low-interest loans for cities and water utilities. “We’re securing the future of our great state by making sure that Texas has the water it needs for decades to come.” He did not add, “As long as you all think that’s a good idea,”

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Rio Grande Water Users Fear Groundwater Pumping Project

Texas Tribune, January 29, 2014

A controversial groundwater pumping plan that opponents argue could threaten the lower Rio Grande’s already depleted supply is highlighting a conundrum in Texas water law.

Texas rivers and springs are considered the property of the state, while water flowing below ground belongs to individual landowners. But many of the state’s surface water resources, from Barton Springs to the Guadalupe, Colorado and Brazos rivers, are fed in large part by groundwater.

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