SALADO — Anyone interested in private water well management is invited to a Texas Well Owner Network training March 31 in Salado, said Drew Gholson, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service program specialist and network coordinator in College Station.
The training, which is free and open to the public, will be from 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m. at Johnny’s Banquet Hall, 301 Thomas Arnold Road. Lunch is included.
“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, and water quality and treatment. Gholson said.
He said participants may bring well-water samples to the training for screening. The cost is $10 per sample, due when the samples are turned in.
“Water samples will be screened for nitrates, total dissolved solids and bacteria,” Gholson said. “Bringing water samples to the training is not required, but those wanting to have their water samples analyzed must attend the training.”
Well owners who would like to have their well water sampled can pick up two sample containers from the AgriLife Extension office in Bell County, 1605 N. Main St., Suite 102 in Belton, and at the Village of Salado offices, 301 N. Stagecoach Road in Salado.
Gholson said space is limited, so attendees are requested to register as soon as possible at http://twon.tamu.edu/training or by calling 979-845-1461.
The training is one of 30 being conducted statewide through the Preventing Water Quality Contamination initiative of the Texas Well Owner Network project.
The core content of the program will be the same as other trainings, but the information is tailored to local water quality issues and aquifers, Gholson said.
“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 and to ensure their drinking water is safe. This means they are responsible for all aspects of the water system – testing, inspecting, maintaining. This training will help private well owners understand and care for their wells.”
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.