Large electronic billboard Rt 9 Amherst/Hadley line
A new lawn sign to join all the political ones
This morning our scientifically minded Amherst Water Supply Protection Committee heard a sobering report from DPW Chief Guilford Mooring and Assistant Town Manager Dave Ziomek updating them on the current water
Water Supply Protection Committee, Dave Ziomek, Guilford Mooring
Click to enlarge photos/graphs
Quickly heading towards previous lowest year, October of 1982
While Atkins Reservoir is easy to measure, the even more important wells at the moment are not.
So a pressure gage will be installed at two locations to give weekly reports on the static level of the water table to measure whether the wells can continue to produce water at current rates.
Atkins Reservoir 8/24
With one reservoir unusable except for the fire department refilling their tankers and Atkins headed towards a shut down the wells will be our only means of survival. And yes the town did rely exclusively on them at one point for a couple months back in the early 1980s.
The state has kept measurements on some wells for about 35 years and the closest one to Amherst in Pelham now measures the lowest in that entire 35 year history.
UMass is making plans for Armageddon by ensuring a bottled water supply could be made quickly available and switching to paper plates in case dishwasher units are eliminated.
Amherst College has set their air conditioning units 5 degrees warmer and the town is tapping the 380,000 gallons of water remaining in the two outdoor pools for routine tree and shrub watering at a rate of 1,000 gallons per day.
Water usage went down after the mandatory ban but is starting to creep back up
With our resident population about to double the peak water consumption day is coming up fast. Last year it occurred on September 6th at 4.2 million gallons.
This year town officials are hoping to keep it to 3.5 million gallons, although it seems to hard to believe since UMass traditionally consumed about 30% of the water supply.
Even if consumption peaks at or a little over 4.2 mgd the wells can handle it
Barring any unforeseen catastrophes, like a monumental structure fire or a C5A crashing into the Lawrence Swamp and taking out Well 4, we should survive the long Labor Day weekend and the first few days of our little college town operating with all our beloved institutes of higher education in session.
The real question is what happens in late September, October and November if Mother Nature continues to deny us routine rainfall?
The Ghost of Christmas future?