Thursday, November 19, 2009

Protesters to fight 'water grab'

El Defensor Chieftan

Written by T.S. Last A Flood of Protests The Fight has Begun Taking Action
Wednesday, 18 November 2009 06:00

Residents of western Socorro County and Catron County are mobilizing in an effort to block what they describe as a "water grab" by Augustin Plains Ranch LLC.

A meeting attended by about 35 people was held Nov. 10 at the Magdalena Public Library for the purpose of informing the public about the issue and coordinating efforts to defeat it.

Don Wiltshire, of Magdalena, a member of the San Agustin Water Coalition — a citizens group that aims to protect San Agustin Plains water basin and functions as a blanket organization for protesters of the corporation's application — served as master of ceremonies.

"We're all in this boat together and we're going to fight it together," Wiltshire told the audience. "That's what it's going to take to win this fight — staying together and hanging in there."

The New York City based corporation filed an application with the state Office of the Engineer two years ago, to drill 37 wells with 20-inch casings in order to pump 54,000 acre-feet of groundwater (about 17.6 billion gallons) from the San Agustin Basin each year. The wells would be located north and south of U.S. 60 just inside Catron County's eastern boundary, between the Very Large Array and the town of Datil.

An amended application, filed in May 2008 and approved by the State Engineer in August of that year, called for an increase in the depth of the drilling from 2,000 to 3,500 feet. It also expanded the area of proposed places of use to any areas within Socorro, Catron, Sierra, Valencia, Bernalillo, Sandoval and Santa Fe counties that are in the Rio Grande Basin." More>>>>

No comments:

Post a Comment