The only thing we can be sure of about the future is that it will be absolutely fantastic. So if what I say now seems to you to be very reasonable, then I have failed completely. Only if what I tell you appears absolutely unbelievable, have we any chance of visualizing the future as it really will happen.

- Arthur C. Clarke (h/t Brin)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Groundwater in Texas

The hydrology of Texas is amazingly complex. Here's the major aquifers:



There's a map of minor aquifers too. They can't easily show them on the same map because of overlaps.

Better version of this map and others are available for the clicking from TWDB


6 comments:

David B. Benson said...

But is any left and if so is that potable?

Michael Tobis said...

A LOT is left, but a lot is gone already. The question is whether to use it for cotton and the like.

Michael Tobis said...

Oh, yes it's potable. San Antonio is running out about now and is getting into court cases against Austin, which I suppose delights all the red politicians no end.

David B. Benson said...

Use an NPP to desalinate sea water and pump it up (horizontally is just small losses). The former will cost about $1.30 per metric tonne and using 250 meters as the elvation, the pumping costs add about $0.82 per tonne to that.

Much better than a court case, me thinks.

Of course, one has to arrange the approximately $4 billion for the NPP alone, plus the desal plant plus the pumping station(s) and piping or canals. But the mortgage payment involved is supposed to be included in the above costs.

Pangolin said...

The question is can Texas survive another year of drought on groundwater resources alone? Or two years? Three?

Multi-year droughts are pretty common out here in California even with the Sierra Nevada and Cascades acting as a vast water storage banks. I hate think what we'd do without them.

Rattus Norvegicus said...

But, but, but I've been assured that The Great Midland Flood broke the drought!