Water Supply

August 21, 2013

City of Austin lost more than three billion gallons of water in 2012. (4 Billion in 2011)

AUSTIN — A KVUE Defenders investigation uncovers the city of Austin loses more than three billion gallons of water a year due to leaky or broken pipes. It’s happening during one of the worst droughts in Texas’ history too.

Austin Sierra Club’s Jennifer Walker says that’s a big deal. “When we’re in a drought, and we’re asking people to conserve water and do their part, it sends a really bad message to have water flowing down the street,” Walker explained.

To put three billions in perspective, that’s enough water to fill all of Lady Bird Lake downtown Austin, with millions of gallons left over.

“We have to make sure we use every drop wisely, from personally conserving water, to making sure our systems are tight,” said Walker.

Earlier this year, the American Society of Civil Engineers released a report card on America’s infrastructure.

It gave water infrastructure a “D” grade. In the report, it explained that some “water pipes date back to the civil war era and often are not examined until there is a problem or a water main break.”

Austin Water Spokesperson Jason Hill agrees the grade fits the state of Austin’s infrastructure. He says hundreds of miles of pipes under the city need replacement. Some of them were built in the 1920s.

For example, a pipe left underground that long can build up just like the arteries in your body. Instead of plaque clogging up a blood vessel, calcium and limestone can clog pipes.

Click here to read more


Tropical rainfall in September in the Lower Rio Grande Valley interrupted the final phases of harvest of the area’s 145,000 acre cotton crop, according to Rod Santa Ana, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications specialist, Weslaco. This field north of McAllen was harvested but not before rains kept the grower from stalk destruction, a state-mandated operation designed to prevent overwintering of boll weevils. (AgriLife Communications photo by Rod Santa Ana)

After prolonged drought, South Texas producers are now struggling with too much moisture

On Sept. 16, the rains were continuing without any let up in the forecast, which was discouraging for South Texas growers of cotton and citrus
by Water News of Texas


Texas is fuming because Mexico isn’t sending the water it owes

Mexico doesn’t dispute its water debt, but says that its own shortages make it impossible, at this point, to comply with the annual 350,000 acre-feet to be given to the United States.
by Water News of Texas


At least 34 Texas Communities have less than a 90 day supply of water. A dozen could go dry in 45 days or less.

"We have sort of taken water for granted for a long time. And I think that time is over. I think its valuation has gone up. Some communities are in more trouble than others,"
by Water News of Texas



37 Percent of Texas now in Extreme to Exceptional Drought – up 30% in 3 months

All drought categories expanded across parts of Texas, resulting in Exceptional Drought covering virtually all of the Texas panhandle
by Water News of Texas


The good, bad, and dried out realities of Texas’ water supply – A one year comparison of Texas Lake Levels

While portions of Texas are bone dry, other lakes runneth over. - An Infographic comparison of Texas Lake Levels from 3/17/13 to 3/17/14.
by Water News of Texas


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