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Water 101

There are many elements of water that can be rather confusing. Understanding water rights, water conservation, water development and water treatment can become overwhelming; however, by gaining a broad understanding of the water issues in the Cedar Valley basin, residents can better acknowledge the challenges and accomplishments of how we provide quality water to our residents.

Understanding where our water comes from can provide everyone with a bigger picture of the water we have available to us.

The primary source for water in the Cedar Valley basin is Coal Creek. This creek delivers water to the basin from precipitation in the surrounding mountain ranges. This source of water is used for irrigation and culinary water, and seeks to recharge portions of the underground aquifer. Understanding the ways in which we receive our water supply, as well as the ways in which the water is used, will help us strive for more efficient water-use practices, and provide this precious resource for the generations that will hope to enjoy this beautiful region. 

Aquifer Water Cycle.gif

1. Snowpack

The snowpack in the Cedar Mountains later provides a source of water as spring runoff begins to fill Coal Creek.

2. Precipitation

Precipitation throughout the year combined with snow melt runoff provides water that runs into Coal Creek.

3. Coal Creek

Coal Creek collects water and carries it from the mountains along its path to later be used as culinary and agricultural water.

4. Aquifer Recharge

Coal Creek is also the water basin's principal source of recharging the underground aquifer.

5. Wells

Various wells throughout the Cedar Basin pump water from the aquifer, creating a depression in the water level where the pumping is taking place.

 6. Consumers

Water from both the wells and Coal Creek are brought to consumers who then use the water in a variety of ways: showers, washing machines, sprinkler systems, etc.

7. Sewage Treatment

Water used inside the home is then pumped to  a sewage treatment plant that then treats the water to secondary standards, where the water is used for agricultural purposes

8. Agriculture Irrigation

Waste water from the sewage treatment plant that has been treated to secondary standards is then used to irrigate farmlands, directly around the sewer treatment plant.

9. Evaporation

Water that is used on the surface for agricultural use evaporates, thus completing the water use cycle

10. Wells

In more rural areas, water is pumped from the aquifer and used specifically for agricultural use.