Texas well-owner training set for May 28

DOUBLE BAYOU, May 11, 2015 - Anyone interested in private water-well management in the Double Bayou watershed is invited to a Texas Well Owner Network training May 28 in Double Bayou.

“It’s great to have a TWON workshop here in the Double Bayou watershed, so that folks have an opportunity to learn more about protecting their own local water resources,” said Linda Shead, Double Bayou watershed coordinator.

The training, which is free and open to the public, will be from 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. at the Double Bayou Community Center, 2211 Eagle Ferry Road, said Drew Gholson, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service program specialist and network coordinator in College Station.

“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, well maintenance and construction, and water quality and treatment.”

He said participants may bring well-water samples to the training to be screened.

The cost is $10 per sample, due when samples are turned in.

“Water samples will be screened for nitrates, total dissolved solids and bacteria,” Gholson said.
Well owners who would like to have their well water sampled can pick up two sample containers from the AgriLife Extension office in Chambers County, 295 Whites Memorial Park Drive in Anahuac.

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

He said space is limited, so attendees are requested to register at http://twon.tamu.edu/training or call 979-845-1461 as soon as possible.

The training is one of 30 being conducted statewide through the Preventing Water Quality Contamination through the Texas Well Owner Network project. Other scheduled trainings include Liberty, Del Rio and Sonora.

“The core content of this program is the same as other trainings, but the information is tailored to local water quality issues and aquifers,” he said.

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.
“Private well owners are independently responsible for monitoring the quality of their wells,” he said. “They are responsible for ensuring their drinking water is safe. This means they are 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.”

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, the AgriLife Extension and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Texas A&M University.

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