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Future of Water

Written by Dick Pryor on Wednesday October 5, 2011


October 2, 2011

Water. We cannot live without it. And, it's the lifeblood of many communities in Oklahoma for recreation, tourism and economic development. So, there has been significant interest in the work being done to develop the 2012 Oklahoma Comprehensive Water Plan across the state and here at Oklahoma Forum.

The plan is complicated, and reads like a research paper, but we tried to present major portions of it in understandable form with our guests: State Sen. Brian Crain, R-Tulsa, who is a member of the Appropriations Sub-Committee on Natural Resources and Regulatory Services and Co-Chair of the Joint Legislative Water Committee; Pennie Embry, freelance journalist and media coordinator for the advocacy group, Oklahomans for Responsible Water Policy; and M. Scott Carter, reporter for The Journal Record, who has written extensively on water policy and water-related issues in Oklahoma.

Sen. Crain's committee is continuing work on evaluation of the plan to prepare for the next legislative session. The committee will meet next on October 5th. The plan is to be presented on October 18th at the Annual Governor's Water Conference.

Among the items we discussed are consumptive and non-consumptive use (including in-stream flow and recreational usage), the need to conduct additional monitoring of the state's water supply, surface and groundwater needs, Sardis Lake, water conservation, and proposals to sell "excess" water to out-of-state interests such as the Tarrant Regional Water District in north Texas.

To read the plan and related materials, we suggest going to the Oklahoma Water Resources Board website:

Until next time,

Dick Pryor

(Pictured above, left to right: Sen. Brian Crain, Scott Carter, Pennie Embry)


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