Long-term water plan essential for East Texas' future - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Long-term water plan essential for East Texas' future

Region I of the East Texas Regional Water Planning Area reviews a 5 year Regional Water Plan. (Source: KTRE Staff) Region I of the East Texas Regional Water Planning Area reviews a 5 year Regional Water Plan. (Source: KTRE Staff)
Peter Lake, Texas Water Development Board member from Tyler tells regional plans are integrated into state plans. (KTRE Staff) Peter Lake, Texas Water Development Board member from Tyler tells regional plans are integrated into state plans. (KTRE Staff)
East Texas Regional Water Planning Area members meet in Nacogdoches. (Source: KTRE Staff) East Texas Regional Water Planning Area members meet in Nacogdoches. (Source: KTRE Staff)
The regional groups review population projects and water demand projections. (Source: KTRE Staff) The regional groups review population projects and water demand projections. (Source: KTRE Staff)
NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) -

Back here at home, population and water demand projections for 22 East Texas counties are underway. 

The five-year plan goes thru 2021 and is wrapping up its first year

The findings are just as important to the region as they are to the entire state of Texas. 

There's abundant water in East Texas, and Region I Chair Kelley Holcomb knows it is often the envy of regional water planning groups across the state.

"We have more water than we have demands in the region,” Holcomb said. “We have adequate water to meet the demands for the next 50 years."

Nevertheless, an integrated projection and needs plan developed and approved by regional volunteers is essential. Texas water development board members are traveling the state to remind groups the importance of their efforts. 

"The plans you guys put together at the regional level and rolls up to the state level water plan is the foundation for water in Texas,” said Peter Lake, a member of the Texas Water Development Board. “That's what makes water in Texas work."

The greatest water demand is primarily manufacturing and municipal needs. Steam-electric demands, include a proposed project in Angelina County.

The diverse region has numerous major water providers. Each must first meet the needs of its own customers. Tyler is experiencing the largest population growth. 

"In terms of percentage of growth, it's been one of the, it's been the fastest growing part of the region for the last several years,” said Rex Hunt, a consulting engineer.

Population and water demands will change over the course of any long-range plan. Water planning groups are advised to remain diligent in their efforts to protect the state's most valuable natural resource.  

The East Texas Regional Water Planning Group did not have enough voting members present to make any proceedings valid. 

This has happened only once before. 

Another attempt will be made after Thanksgiving to go over the water plan and appoint new voting members. 

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