Allow me this admission.
Sometimes — maybe more often than I care to admit — I’m a bit slow on the uptake when it involves certain elements of science.
I’m not a scientist. Or a mathematician. Or an accountant. Numbers and scientific theories boggle me.
So it is with that caveat that I suggest that I am beginning to accept the notion that pumping water out of Lake Meredith to 11 cities throughout the Panhandle actually saves surface water that collects in the lake.
The Canadian River Municipal Water Authority is starting to pump water out of the lake in the wake of recent rainfall that has continued to restore the lake levels to something far greater than puddle designation.
Kent Satterwhite, general manager of CRMWA, said: “Everything we pump out of the lake is one gallon less than we pump out of the (Ogallala) aquifer.” He said it is “really important. The aquifer as you use it, it’s gone. It recharges to some slight degree … So it’s really important to try to preserve it and that’s why the lake is here to take some of the heat off the aquifer.”
Pumping water also maximizes the quality of the water, Satterwhite said. The Canadian River contains salt that evaporates more easily during dry periods.
Lake Meredith’s levels have risen fairly dramatically in recent days. It’s nearly at 50 feet, which is far greater than the 26 feet it measured in 2013. OK, so the lake is now about halfway toward its historic high of 100-plus feet set back in the early 1970s.
I guess I’m trying to express some appreciation of the knowledge that water managers must have to monitor this priceless resource.
The region depends on it at almost every level imaginable. There must be some faith placed in the individuals charged with ensuring we keep it as close to forever as we can.