Electro Purification counters claims of aquifer depletion

By: 

Senior News Reporter

Representatives of Electro Purification (EP) presented a study demonstrating the viability of the company’s plans to pump the Trinity Aquifer at Tuesday’s Hays County Commissioners Court meeting.

A study by Wet Rock Groundwater Services, an environmental consulting firm representing EP, argued for sustainability in plans to pump the aquifer. Lawyers and hydrologists debated the accuracy of a contradicting study presented by EP’s opponents.

Kaveh Khorzad, president of Wet Rock Groundwater Services, said EP’s proposed rate of 2.7 million gallons of water per day would not damage the aquifer irreversibly.

LBG-Guyton Associates, an environmental consulting firm representing private landowners near the proposed EP well site, presented data at a March 24 commissioners court meeting. Representatives argued EP’s pumping plans could deplete the aquifer within decades.

Khorzad said the scientific report was flawed on multiple levels.

Khorzad said LBG-Guyton Associates’ study was hurried, included inaccurate data and was based on the assumption the aquifer would have no capacity to recharge.

Recharge would likely be partially supplied by nearby, connected aquifers, he said.

Khorzad could not promise the Trinity Aquifer would recharge from other groundwater sources.

Bert Cobb, Hays County Judge, said the contradictory findings by Wet Rock Groundwater Services and LBG-Guyton Associates troubled him.

“I’ve got a drawer full of studies,” Cobb said. “A study is worthless unless it leads to something that improves the situation.”

Ed McCarthy, legal representative for EP, admitted more research needed to be conducted before the court could make an educated decision on the proposal.

Khorzad said officials with Wet Rock Groundwater Services have plans for long-term testing and a water-monitoring network.