AUSTIN (Nexstar) — On Monday, a panel of environmentalists joined a webinar hosted by the Environmental Defense Fund to discuss their disappointment in the state legislature for not passing more legislation to protect Texas’ groundwater supplies.
The Texas Water Development Board recently estimated Texas’ population will increase by 70% by 2070, which would mean supplying 20 million more Texans with water then.
“Where will the water come from?” Vanessa Puig-Williams with EDF pointed out during the webinar, adding that supply is already dwindling.
“Texas is not just going to have more frequent droughts…Texas is actually becoming more arid. So we need to think long term about how we manage our water resources in a sustainable way to ensure their longevity and to protect the people and wildlife who depend on this water,” Williams said.
The group discussed what they’re going to do to encourage lawmakers to fund more research in the science of groundwater conservation, and protect landowner’s rights to supplies of groundwater on their property.
“The scales are out of balance right now. They are they are in favor of those who want to use the water irrespective of how good the science or the laws are. And those that want to conserve water and protect those resources cannot afford the fight. So we’re going to have to figure out how we’re going to do that as a lot as well as getting all the good sides under good bills in the legislature,” David Langford, founder of the Headwaters Alliance explained.
The group is hoping to work with legislators before the next session to form legislation that would make all stakeholders happy.
“The question is whether Texas will be prepared whether our leaders will have done all that they can do to ensure that our groundwater supplies, the communities, the landowners, the wildlife, and the rivers and springs that depend on their flow will be resilient,” Williams added.