Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Lubbock: Remember the Drought?

One of the best parts of being a bicycle commuter is getting a closer look at where you live.

One of the worst parts of being a bicycle commuter is getting a closer look at where you live.

Over the last few weeks I have seen a change in the town - people, businesses, churches, and schools have started watering their yards.

On a bike, that means 1) it's time to install some fenders, 2) you need to be careful to avoid all of the standing water, or 3) you are going to show up at work with a muddy butt. My watery nemesis these days is the southwest corner of 50th and Utica.

In a bigger sense, it means that we (Lubbock) are not scared of drought.
I have been following the plight of Californians in this time of drought. Things are getting desperate. A very informative article showed up on Mother Jones this week. As I was reading through it, I realized how many of the same issues they are facing are very present here. The only difference is that we were fortunate enough to get some significant rain in recent times. We were (ever-so-slightly) pulled out of our severe drought. The Californians haven't been so fortunate.

Mother Jones: 7 Key Facts about the Drought

The article highlights drought issues surrounding municipal water use, agricultural water use, and fracking water use. (Sound familiar?) It also includes a pretty terrifying graphic that captures US drought conditions 1 week ago.

Image from the Mother Jones article (with a few additions)

California (of course) shows extreme drought throughout the state. The Texas panhandle has the next-most severe drought area - in the counties just to the north and east of Lubbock.

It's early April. Today's forecast already has us in the 90's.

Lubbock citizens, please actively pursue water conservation.

May we work together for a common good.