Friday, November 15, 2013
Citizens Oppose SAWS-Val Verde Water Supply Project
San Antonio Water System (SAWS) is currently considering three proposals to import 50,000 acre feet of water per year (AFY) for use in San Antonio. In the very near future, the SAWS Board will consider a recommendation from SAWS staff to approve one of these three projects.
Among these projects is V.V. Water Company, LLC’s proposal to export ground water from Val Verde and Kinney counties via a pipeline to be built by SAWS for that purpose. On October 22, 2013, twenty-two organizations and individuals sent a letter to SAWS citing concerns about severe limitations on the availability of groundwater in Val Verde and Kinney counties. These concerns were based on an analysis, Investigating Water Resources of the Western Edwards-Trinity Aquifer, conducted by Southwest Research Institute on behalf of Sutton County Underground Water Conservation District. The report calculates annual sustainable yield of groundwater at between 18,000 and 22,600 AFY, well below the amount proposed for export to San Antonio.
“Exporting this amount of groundwater could decrease or eliminate spring flows at San Felipe and Las Moras springs and could adversely affect groundwater supplies needed for current and future domestic, municipal and agricultural uses within the region.” said John Yeakle of the Southwest Water Alliance, a coalition of civic, and business groups from Val Verde, Kinney and Uvalde counties.
Representatives of organizations from San Antonio, Del Rio, Uvalde, Kinney County and Val Verde counties will voice their concerns during “Citizens to be Heard”, requesting that the SAWS Board drop from consideration V. V. Water Company LLC’s proposal to supply 50,000 acre/feet per year from Val Verde and Kinney counties.
It is wonderful and powerful that GEAA members from San Antonio, Del Rio, Uvalde, and Bracketville can come together to advocate a regional consensus in opposition to a project that could dry up two of the remaining great springs of the Edwards Aquifer. Stay tuned for more in this issue, and look for an article to be published this Sunday in the San Antonio Express News.