The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality approved an emergency order Wednesday that will keep Lower Colorado River water from being released downstream to farmers. The no release stays in effect until Oct. 15, according to media reports.
Despite unprecedented rainfall totals in recent months, Central Texans are still concerned about the future of the region’s water supply and pressure, especially from the city of Austin seemed to have major impact on the decision.
The report was that farmers, including rice farmers, didn’t support release of water at this time because of the rainfall that has occurred, but those farmers want delivery of irrigation water under the terms of either a 2010 plan or under a revised emergency order for the 2017 crop-year planting.
Since 2012, the Lower Colorado River Authority has suspended the release of water downstream, cutting of irrigation waters to rice farmers and other customers. They said it was necessary because the low levels of the reservoirs of Lake Travis and Buchanan.