EL PASO, TX (KTSM) – A recent federal grant of $3.3 million was awarded to the El Paso County Water Improvement District No. 1 (EPCWID1) to support the water conservation initiatives and was selected for two Community Project Funding.

Officials say water currently lost to seepage and evaporation will be conserved by concrete lining canals, automating canal checks and gates, and upgrading water flow metering systems to 5G. EPCWID1’s $20+ million conservation project portfolio will result in annual savings of approximately 9,516 acre-feet of water.

This is about the same amount of water used by 18,000 households every year.

 “Modernization continues to be one of our top priorities, and EPCWID1’s Board of Directors has been very supportive of our conservation projects and system upgrades. We are in the middle of an almost 20-year drought, and these grants will help EPCWID1 pay for infrastructure costs, lessening the impact on local taxpayers. We are excited and thankful for the continued partnership with Reclamation, the Texas Water Development Board, Congresswoman Veronica Escobar, Congressman Tony Gonzales, and our other partners,”

Jesus Reyes, General Manager of the El Paso County Water Improvement District No. 1.

Some other challenges our are faces is an agricultural system that is a century old, and a growing sister city in Mexico with shared groundwater and surface water supplies, and interstate and international treaties, all which can have an impact on the water supply from the Rio Grande.

EPCWID1’s water conservation initiatives are possible through support from State Senator Cesar Blanco, State Representative Mary Gonzales, El Paso County Judge Samaniego and Commissioner Iliana Holguin, the City of Socorro, the City of San Elizario, the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo, the Rio Grande Council of Governments, and other partners committed to conservation.

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