West Texas

New Demand, Same Old Story: West Texans And Their Water

Nov 15, 2017
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT News

This piece is Part 4 of our Untapped series about the new West Texas.

In arid West Texas, where rain is infrequent and rivers and lakes are few, groundwater – water from sources beneath the surface of the earth – is key to survival. And as the oil and gas industry in the Permian Basin demands more of this resource from the surrounding area, researchers are scrambling to study the systems of webbed aquifers that feed households, farms, ranches and industry in the region.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT News

This piece is Part 3 of our Untapped series about the new West Texas.

For generations, Texans have visited the desert oasis of San Solomon Springs for recreation, refreshment and rejuvenation. And for almost as long, the springs have powered the economy of the tiny town that sits next to them; Balmorhea. But now, an expanding industry is bringing big change to Balmorhea.

Travis Bubenik

This piece is Part 2 of our Untapped series about the new West Texas.

It was almost three years ago when the oil industry took a nosedive.

The headlines told stories of lost jobs and struggling towns,but now, despite the continued downturn, things seem better. At least in the Permian Basin of west Texas.

Untapped: The New West Texas

Nov 15, 2017
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon

This piece is Part 1 of our Untapped series about the new West Texas.

The Permian Basin in West Texas leads the nation in oil and gas production. Midland and Odessa have long been the heart of this industrialized desert. But oil and gas development is expanding outward. In the past year, drilling operations have moved south and west into a region long written off as undevelopable.

Chris Hunkeler via Flickr

The group that manages almost all of the Texas electric grid has decided it's a good idea to build out more transmission lines in West Texas. That in itself might not sound like a big deal, but the reason behind it is. KUT's Mose Buchele joins Morning Edition host Jennifer Stayton to explain.

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