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Mith242

Water Sources of Northwest Arkansas

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Mith242    69

I heard a lot about water problems in the past year although more of it has to do with not having enough big pipes to move the water around. But one thing I recently learned is that we are expected to outgrow our water source at Beaver Lake in around 25 to 45 years. I was curious to see what people thought of this and what suggestions people might have on other sources. Ft Smith is about to complete a new dam about halfway between Fayetteville and Ft Smith this spring. Then it's supposed to be full by spring 2006. This newer lake will swallow the two smaller lakes that were there. But where you you guys see us getting new sources of water from? Anyone think we'll build a new dam and lake? New dams and lakes don't happen a lot anymore here in the US. But I suppose it's possible to try to put a new lake on the White River. Of course a bigger problem will be how many homes will be built near the White River and where can we put a new lake? Or does anyone have other alternatives?

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I heard a lot about water problems in the past year although more of it has to do with not having enough big pipes to move the water around. But one thing I recently learned is that we are expected to outgrow our water source at Beaver Lake in around 25 to 45 years. I was curious to see what people thought of this and what suggestions people might have on other sources. Ft Smith is about to complete a new dam about halfway between Fayetteville and Ft Smith this spring. Then it's supposed to be full by spring 2006. This newer lake will swallow the two smaller lakes that were there. But where you you guys see us getting new sources of water from? Anyone think we'll build a new dam and lake? New dams and lakes don't happen a lot anymore here in the US. But I suppose it's possible to try to put a new lake on the White River. Of course a bigger problem will be how many homes will be built near the White River and where can we put a new lake? Or does anyone have other alternatives?

I'm personally opposed to new lakes being build that swallow up existing nature areas and habitat. I love the natural streams of the area.

I guess its a necessary evil.

Perhaps something southeast of Fayetteville in cooperation with the National Forest Service, hopefully with caveats that the shorlines remain natural to minimize sediment and chemical runoff to preserve water quality.

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Mith242    69

I'm personally opposed to new lakes being build that swallow up existing nature areas and habitat. I love the natural streams of the area.

I guess its a necessary evil.

Perhaps something southeast of Fayetteville in cooperation with the National Forest Service, hopefully with caveats that the shorlines remain natural to minimize sediment and chemical runoff to preserve water quality.

How about something like expanding Lake Sequoyah like they expanded Lake Ft Smith? Although there are other things to consider. Is the topography great enough to make a larger lake? Also how many homes are going to go under? Especially when you consider that this would probably be happening decades from now. I believe Lake Sequoyah used to be Fayetteville's water source a while back ago.

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masons_dad1    0

I heard a lot about water problems in the past year although more of it has to do with not having enough big pipes to move the water around. But one thing I recently learned is that we are expected to outgrow our water source at Beaver Lake in around 25 to 45 years. I was curious to see what people thought of this and what suggestions people might have on other sources. Ft Smith is about to complete a new dam about halfway between Fayetteville and Ft Smith this spring. Then it's supposed to be full by spring 2006. This newer lake will swallow the two smaller lakes that were there. But where you you guys see us getting new sources of water from? Anyone think we'll build a new dam and lake? New dams and lakes don't happen a lot anymore here in the US. But I suppose it's possible to try to put a new lake on the White River. Of course a bigger problem will be how many homes will be built near the White River and where can we put a new lake? Or does anyone have other alternatives?

I believe the answer lies, not in new water sources, but in water conservation. I'm not really sure how it's done right now, but all water for lawns should be well water and should have designated watering times and there should be tax incentives to install water-saving devices in homes such as low-flow water faucets and shower heads and water temperature devices to keep hot water at the faucet. There are more alternative water conservation ideas, but these are cheap and if used in almost every home we could double our water resources over the next 25 years.

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Mith242    69

I believe the answer lies, not in new water sources, but in water conservation. I'm not really sure how it's done right now, but all water for lawns should be well water and should have designated watering times and there should be tax incentives to install water-saving devices in homes such as low-flow water faucets and shower heads and water temperature devices to keep hot water at the faucet. There are more alternative water conservation ideas, but these are cheap and if used in almost every home we could double our water resources over the next 25 years.

That would certainly help but I still think we're going to have to look at other water sources with the type of growth we're having. We need to at least have some ideas ahead of time before we hit that problem. But those are some good ideas. I'm not sure how all of them will go over with everyone. I'm not sure if we can end up being like some western cities with water police and such.

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I believe the answer lies, not in new water sources, but in water conservation. I'm not really sure how it's done right now, but all water for lawns should be well water and should have designated watering times and there should be tax incentives to install water-saving devices in homes such as low-flow water faucets and shower heads and water temperature devices to keep hot water at the faucet. There are more alternative water conservation ideas, but these are cheap and if used in almost every home we could double our water resources over the next 25 years.

This is a very good point. There are MANY ways the individual can conserve water. I have read that around 40% of water used in most metros is for personal lawn care, etc..

I have been slowly planning my retreat to NWA in the near future, and I have looked at many ways to conserve water at my new house there. I've looked into the use of rain-catching barrels that can be attached to channel and conserve roof run-off for use in watering plants, etc.

The effort, as you stated, lies in education and incentives so that residents actually act as conservationists.

The meat-processing plants use an unbelieveably large amount of water in their operations as well, and everyone knows we have our fair share of them here. I don't know if they are subject to any kind of surcharge or tax for their disproportionate water use, or required to reprocess and re-use their water. Thats something that could be looked into as well.

At least NWA is not built in a desert like Phoenix.

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Mith242    69

At least NWA is not built in a desert like Phoenix.

Very true, nothing like going to cities like Phoenix and Albuquerque and seeing people trying to have huge green yards in the middle of the desert. Granted we aren't anywhere in the situation like they are but it would be great to see better conservation in the area.

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itk    0

I think that 25-45 time frame is based on the assumption that the Beaver Water District reaches its max allotted water it can withdrawl from Beaver Lake according to its agreement with the US Army Corp of Engineers. And if NWA keeps growing at the pace that it is. It's my understanding it could, in theory, draw much more water from Beaver Lake, but of course you know Beaver Dam provides hydroelectric power. I heard it's sold up to KC metro area (NWA is fed by that coal plant near Gentry). But I don't know what if anything could be done with Beaver to extend the water district's max allottment. I would bet, though, that if it is determined that a new lake is needed as a water source (I think that's the US Amry Corp of Engineer's department) in a 25-45 year time frame, that they would begin studying that possibility real soon.

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Mith242    69

I think that 25-45 time frame is based on the assumption that the Beaver Water District reaches its max allotted water it can withdrawl from Beaver Lake according to its agreement with the US Army Corp of Engineers. And if NWA keeps growing at the pace that it is. It's my understanding it could, in theory, draw much more water from Beaver Lake, but of course you know Beaver Dam provides hydroelectric power. I heard it's sold up to KC metro area (NWA is fed by that coal plant near Gentry). But I don't know what if anything could be done with Beaver to extend the water district's max allottment. I would bet, though, that if it is determined that a new lake is needed as a water source (I think that's the US Amry Corp of Engineer's department) in a 25-45 year time frame, that they would begin studying that possibility real soon.

Good point. Right now they have an agreement to produce so much electricity. But as we need more water this could be changed in the future. Of course I guess there could be other things to consider as if we have another dry year like we did last year.

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masons_dad1    0

I needed a place to post this and this is the closest topic I could find without creating a new one.

If anyone is interested in watching a video of the Beaver Water District Expansion Project here's a link for you. It's by Dykon Blasting Corp of Tulsa, OK. If you like 80's music and underground explosions you'll love this video! :D

Beaver Water Expansion Project Video [Download link to .wmv file]

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