Regulator Tightens Brazos Basin Water Conservation

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - State environmental regulators are tightening the screws on water diversions in the Brazos River Basin as the drought worsens in Central Texas and the river's headwaters.

The move by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality affects mainly those who use river water for irrigation or to water stock. The commission said in a Monday statement that it sent letters Friday to some junior water rights holders that their rights to Brazos water may be suspended or decreased if they don't act significantly to conserve.

On Nov. 19, the commission ordered that water rights be suspended for users of Brazos River water downstream from Possum Kingdom Lake with rights dating as far back as 1942. Exempted from the suspension were municipal, domestic and power generation users.