Lubbock, TX - During these winter months, the High Plains Water District is conducting their annual measurements of the water tables beneath the South Plains.
They are surveying over 1400 wells in sixteen counties, a process that will take over two months. The water they are measuring is used by farmers and people who don't live in cities.
EverythingLubbock.com joined HPWD as they surveyed a well in South Lubbock. Keith Whitworth, Field Technician Supervisor for HPWD, cranked a long tape measure into a well on a cotton farm, noting the water level has come up.
"With the sandier soil and the agriculture in this area kind of moves south and there's not that much demand right here so the water table has to come up," Whitworth explained.
While housing development may not tax the water table as much as agriculture does, the surge in housing developments outside of the Lubbock city limits will also impact water levels.
"Most of the home development now is outside the city limits, so that will start to stress the Ogallala aquifer in this area where all this new development is," Whitworth said.
Especially for farmers, Whitworth explained that the data they gather about the water tables can be crucial.
"It's important to keep track of the rise and fall of the water table so you can plan ahead, an area is not going to run out of water instantly," he said.
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