Phone : (800) 256-0935 Fax: (903) 786-8211
The District, through strategies and programs adopted in the District’s management plan and rules, strives to ensure the most efficient use of groundwater to sustain available resources for the future while maintaining the vibrant economic growth of the District. The Well Monitoring Program is one of the key programs implemented by the District to ensure the most efficient use of the groundwater resources within the region.
Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) measures a selected number of wells across all the major and minor aquifer of the State of Texas. TWDB uses the data collected from the wells to develop Groundwater Availability Models for each aquifer. In the District area, TWDB measures 16 wells across the two counties. Increasing the number of monitoring wells is essential to better understand the aquifers and gain insights on the impacts of water levels due to pumping in a specific area.
Two main benefits for well owners who are considering adding them well to the District’s well monitoring program are a more accurate reading of water levels at their location and a better understanding of how pumping in and around the District impacts their wells.
The Trinity Aquifer is a major aquifer extending across much of the central and northeastern part of Texas. The aquifer is composed of several water bearing formations. These formations can be treated as individual aquifers or one single hydraulically connected aquifer. The Antlers, Paluxy, and Twin Mountains formations are the water bearing formations located within the District’s jurisdiction. The Trinity is one of the most extensive and highly used groundwater resources in Texas
The Woodbine Aquifer is a minor aquifer located in northeast Texas and overlies the Trinity Aquifer. The aquifer consists of sandstone inter-bedded with shale and clay that form three distinct water-bearing zones. The lower zones of the aquifer typically yield the most water, whereas the upper zone yields limited water that tends to be very high in iron.
Each year, the District’s staff will measure the water lever of the well in the well monitoring program using methods like air lines, graduated steel tapes, electric tapes, and pressure transducers.Air lines, graduated steel tapes, and electric tapes are used to measure a single water level during the time the District’s staff is visiting the well. Graduated steel tapes and electric tapes are used to measure water levels that are within 500 feet of the surface. Air lines are tubing installed with the pump and the water level can be determine by using pressure from an air compressor. Before measuring the water level with this method, the well must not be operated for at least the past 24 hours. The District’s staff will arrange a time with the will owner to measure the well.
Pressure transducers include a data-logger that will collect data from the pressure transducers at a designated time-interval. Pressure transducers provides trends related to the aquifers throughout the year. Ideally, these pressure transducers will be installed in a well that is not operational.
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) rules indicates that abandoned public water system wells will be plugged, and the plugging of a well could be cost prohibitive to a public water system. TCEQ regulatory authorities agree that entities with unused wells monitored for water levels are exempt from the requirement. The District will assist a public water system by using their unused wells as a monitoring well.
The District and the public water system would have to reach an agreement to allow the District access to the wells. The public water system will be required to remove any equipment down hole. The well cannot be in a deteriorated condition. The District could possible install dataloggers to continuously measure the water level.
All wells used in the program shall be registered or permitted with the District. Owners will be asked to register any unregistered well by filling out appropriate forms and applications. Additionally, the owner will be asked to sign a monitoring well agreement with the District.
Data collected from the wells will be used by the District to make sound and informed management decisions and rule amendments that will ensure the most efficient use of groundwater to sustain available resources for the future while maintaining the vibrant economic growth of the District.