There were 519 press releases posted in the last 24 hours and 313,085 in the last 365 days.

PRESS RELEASE: Texas Comptroller Visits Panhandle for Second Stop of Good for Texas Tour: Water Edition

TEXAS, September 20 - September 20, 2022

(AMARILLO) — Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar today visited the Panhandle Groundwater Conservation District (PGCD) on the second stop of his Good for Texas Tour: Water Edition. The PGCD is home to one of five cloud seeding programs in Texas. Cloud seeding is a form of weather modification used to stimulate clouds to produce rain. This process is commonly referred to as precipitation enhancement.

“In the U.S., cloud seeding is increasingly accepted as an effective method of providing relief in drought-stricken states such as Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming,” said Hegar, a member of the board of advisers for the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas, a critical financial assistance tool for high-cost projects. “To help supplement the Texas water supply, some areas of the state are using periodic cloud seeding attempts to increase rainfall. The PGCD conducts cloud seeding operations to augment groundwater recharge over the Ogallala Aquifer. This is a target area of nearly 4.1 million acres in the eastern sector of the Texas Panhandle, which allows access to cloud systems moving out of Oklahoma.”

During his Good for Texas Tour: Water Edition, Hegar is sharing the results of a new Comptroller’s office report highlighting the roles that water planning and management play in ensuring enough water is available for future generations of Texas families and businesses. He is touring a handful of key water facilities across the state, focusing on water topics such as desalination, aquifers, cloud seeding, surface water, canal systems, groundwater, flood mitigation and water reuse.

The Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) estimates that implementing new water infrastructure will require $80 billion in capital costs over the next 50 years, and $47 billion of that is expected to come from state financial programs. This funding is essential: TWDB reports Texas’ water demands are projected to increase by about 9 percent over the next 50 years, while its existing water supplies are estimated to decline by about 18 percent during that same time. 

In cloud seeding, aircraft spray clouds with small particles such as silver iodide, which have structures like ice. The particles cause the moisture in the clouds to condense into water droplets until they are heavy enough to fall as rain. 

Cloud seeding is not a major source of new water in Texas, but it is one of many water management strategies that help ensure water is available for future needs. The 2022 State Water Plan recommends that cloud seeding provide about 5,000 acre-feet of water per year for irrigation users by 2070 – about 1 percent of the total recommended water strategy supplies in that year.

For more information on the tour, including social media graphics, go to the Comptroller’s website.