The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has approved a plan that will protect endangered species in the Edwards Aquifer while still allowing cities to pump water from it.
Roland Ruiz, Edwards Aquifer Authority General Manager said approval of this plan is so critical for the region, as it brings an amount of regulation to how we're going to manage the aquifer while still complying to federal law.
"To the federal government, it says we've identified to the policies that were going to implement and carry out to protect these species," said Roland. "And in turn we get to continue to manage and use the aquifer to meet our water needs.
The plan reduces major cities pumping limits by 44 percent, in addition to numerous other items that are designed to protect the aquifer during extreme drought conditions.
"We will pay farmers not to use their waters in those most extreme circumstances," said Ruiz. "There's also another component where we are going to lease water from Edwards Aquifer permit holders and store it for use during worst case scenarios."
By: Marissa A. Wagner
Friday, February 15, 2013
Image attributed to: http://www.sanantonio.gov/cims/edvisuals.asp?res=1280&ver=true