Texas Drought Has Cattle Ranchers Worried
Texas is getting fracked by BigOil
The ongoing drought in Texas has cattle ranchers worried. Severe to exceptional drought has spread across 65% of the state. Water levels in reservoirs are expected to reach record lows in the coming weeks.
Ranchers are reducing herds in an effort to keep pastures from overgrazing. In spite of this the majority of pastures in Texas are in poor shape. Texas cattle herds are their lowest since 1967.
In addition to the lower levels in the reservoirs, the ground water is scarce and lake levels are falling. Some lakes are down to a third of their capacity. To preserve drinking water supplies, some farmers have been cut off from irrigating their parched fields leading to a worsening of the grazing and grain production. Water authorities are frantically drilling for underground aquifers to deal with the disaster
Texas governor Rick Perry has declared hundreds of counties disaster zones
WHEREAS, record high temperatures, preceded by significantly low rainfall, have resulted in declining reservoir and aquifer levels, threatening water supplies and delivery systems in many parts of the state; and
WHEREAS, prolonged dry conditions continue to increase the threat of wildfire across many portions of the state; and
WHEREAS, these drought conditions have reached historic levels and continue to pose an imminent threat to public health, property and the economy Rick Perry
This three year long drought has residents beginning to compare it to the decade long drought in the 50s.
The low water flows in the rivers and streams has changed water quality as well. Growth of water weeds and algae has choked some watercourses so badly that vegetation acts as a temporary dam, skewing flow gauge readings.
Adding to the Texans water woes is the expanding fracking industry. A well may consume and pollute up to 8 million gallons of water. For a small town and ranchers whose wells have dried up, eight million gallons of water would go a long way to alleviating the problem. And there arethousands of fracking wells sucking up the water.
No water, no life