Colorado River at “Critical” flow standard; Bastrop Wells

The drought is not over in the Colorado River basin and the environmental flow standard for the river at Bastrop is in “critical” stage.  At this stage the LCRA is required to maintain a minimum flow of 120 cubic feet per second at the Bastrop Gage.   Because the rice farmers are not getting water this summer, the flow at Bastrop can be expected to drop to this critical level as soon as the rains stop.  The only supplement will be the Garwood irrigation water right.

You can watch the Bastrop Gage at this link.

I see there are issues with the City of Bastrop water wells.  Most of these wells are “alluvial” wells, meaning they are in the Colorado River alluvial aquifer and are impacted by the river level.  This is the first time since the Highland Lakes were completed that the rice farmers have not received water and so the river is at a historic low point for this time of year in Bastrop (except for the rainfall we have been getting).   We can expect that the Bastrop water wells will be impacted by the “critical” and historic low flow.