Wyoming State Engineer Pat Tyrrell says he’s optimistic that community members will be able to come up with voluntary measures to manage water resources in the Horse Creek Basin in southeastern Wyoming.
Tyrrell says there appears to be a water shortage, and he says it’s complicated figuring out how much water everyone is entitled to, because groundwater and surface water are connected in the area.
Tyrrell hosted a public hearing in LaGrange on Friday to gather input from water users about what to do, and he says the meeting was productive.
The state engineer says Laramie County residents could see new restrictions on groundwater use in the future.
Much of the county gets its water from the Ogallala Aquifer, which is being depleted faster than it can recharge. The state engineer’s office is launching a study to figure out what would happen to the aquifer if current water use continues.
State Engineer Pat Tyrrell says it’s important to come up with a management plan before the water runs out.