Water-well owner training set for April 9 in Lubbock

LUBBOCK — Anyone interested in private water-well management in the Southern High Plains region is invited to attend the Texas Well Owner Network training April 9 in Lubbock.

A Texas Well Owner Network training will be held April 9 in Lubbock, and attendees are welcome to bring well-water samples for testing. (Texas Well Owner Network photo)

A Texas Well Owner Network training will be held April 9 at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Lubbock. Program  attendees may bring well-water samples to the program to have them screened for nitrates, dissolved solids, arsenic and bacteria. (Texas Well Owner Network photo)

The no-cost training will be from 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m. at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center, 1102 East Farm-to-Market 1294, said Drew Gholson, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service program specialist and program coordinator. Participants may bring water well samples for analysis.

“The TWON program is for Texas residents who depend on household wells for their water needs so they can learn about improving and protecting their community water resources,” Gholson said. “The program was established to help well owners become familiar with Texas groundwater resources, septic system maintenance, well maintenance and construction, water quality and water treatment.”

Representatives of the High Plains Underground Water Conservation District No. 1 in Lubbock will be on hand to provide additional information about local groundwater resources, water well spacing requirements, winter water level measurements and proper closure of open abandoned water wells.

This is one of 14 trainings to be conducted through the Preventing Water Quality Contamination Program through the Texas Well Owner Network project, he added.

Gholson said private well owners bringing well water samples to the training may have them screened for nitrate, total dissolved solids, arsenic and bacteria.

“The core content of these trainings will be the same, but the information will be tailored to the local water quality issues and aquifers,” Gholson said.

Other scheduled trainings include those in Amarillo, Wimberley, Fort Stockton, Lampasas and Uvalde.

Well owners can pick up sample bags from the Lubbock County Extension Office, 916 Main Street, Suite 201, Lubbock — or the Hale, Hockley, Crosby or Lynn County Extension Offices.

“Fill each bag, according to instructions, with a sample from their well, and bring the samples to the training on April 9,” Gholson said.

The analyses cost $10 per sample for nitrate, total dissolved solids, arsenic and bacteria.

Bringing water samples to the training is not required, Gholson said, but those wanting to have water samples analyzed must attend the training.

“More than 1 million private water wells in Texas provide water to citizens in rural areas and increasingly to those living on small acreages at the growing rural-urban interface,” he said. “Private well owners are independently responsible for monitoring the quality of their wells. They are responsible for ensuring their drinking water is safe. They are also responsible for all aspects of the water system – testing, inspecting, maintaining – and this training will help private well owners to understand and care for their wells.”

Attendance is limited, so attendees are requested to register at http://twon.tamu.edu/training or by calling 979-845-1461 as soon as possible.

Funding for the Texas Well Owner Network is through a Clean Water Act nonpoint source grant provided by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The project is managed by the Texas Water Resources Institute, part of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, AgriLife Extension and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Texas A&M University.

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