Finally, the fact that there is not an inexhaustible supply of water in Arizona is making the news.
In a recent (Jan 22, 2023) interview with Tony Davis in the Arizona Daily Star, former Arizona Governor Bruce Babbitt pointed out: “There are still a significant number of groundwater users who have no replenishment obligations (meaning they aren’t required to replenish the aquifer with as much water as they pump from it) …” Babbit went on to point out that mining is one of those users.
He also talked about the creation of the Arizona Groundwater Management Act in 1980, which placed some limitations on water use in the urban areas of Phoenix, Tucson and Prescott. Unfortunately, there were no limitations on mining. SSSR’s longest serving board member, Dr. Morris Farr, was a state senator at the time and he sat on the committee that negotiated the Groundwater Management Act. He has reminded us many times, that, very unfortunately, the only way the Act could pass was to not affect mining. That is, mines could drill as deep as they wanted and pump as much as they wanted – and that remains true today. It is time for change! There is no longer enough water for mines to squander it washing rocks.
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Take a look at the two letters to the editor below. One addresses the amount of water Hudbay/Copper World would like to use; the other points out that that copper is not in short supply.
Letters to the Editor:
* Insufficient water by Gayle Hartmann
* Green energy needs copper by Guy Rovella