By Tiffany Pelt - email
LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) – Lake Meredith is at an all time low dropping below 40 feet. This record coincides with the Canadian River Municipal Water Authority, CRMWA, deciding its water allocations.
Lake Meredith supplies water to 11 different cities including Lubbock. With water levels low, the total amount CRMWA allotted to Lubbock dropped by almost 13%, but officials said they're not worried.
"Lake Meredith is at an all time low, but that comes as no surprise to anybody at the city," said Councilman Jim Gilbreath. "Years ago the city started planning for this eventuality and now it's come to pass."
Last year CRMWA allotted a total of 80,000 acre feet of water to the 11 cities. One acre foot is equivalent to an acre of land under one foot of water. Making up that total, 55,000 acre feet came from groundwater and 25,000 came from Lake Meredith.
With the help of pipeline expansions, CRMWA is able to use more groundwater to accommodate the low lake levels. "What the city did along with the members of CRMWA is to acquire the water rights to over 200,000 acres in Roberts County," said Gilbreath.
Next year CRMWA will allocate 65,000 acre feet from groundwater and significantly lower the amount from Lake Meredith to only 5,000. That's 20,000 acre feet less than what is being taken out of Lake Meredith currently.
Even with more pipeline expansions, CRMWA still had to lower the total amount allocated to 70,000 acre feet, but Lubbock still has other wells to tap into.
"We've got back up wells in Bailey County which the city has had for years and years," said Gilbreath. "We're also in the process of building pipeline for Lake Alan Henry." That project is expected to be complete in the summer of 2012 and will provide Lubbock with 40% of its water supply.
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