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North I-90 Odessa Aquifer Groundwater Replacement Project Applauds Funding in 2017-2019 Washington State Capital Budget for the Odessa Groundwater Replacement Program

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MOSES LAKE, Wash., Feb. 5, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — The “North I-90 Odessa Aquifer Groundwater Replacement Project” applauds the recent passage of Washington’s State Capital Budget, which will invest more than $4 billion in essential infrastructure and construction projects statewide, including $15 million for the East Columbia Basin Irrigation District for the Odessa Groundwater Replacement Program.  At a recent steering committee meeting of the North I-90 Odessa Aquifer Groundwater Replacement Project, the various participants acknowledged the strong leadership of Senators Mark Schoesler and Judy Warnick as well as the support of Reps. Tom Dent, Mary Dye, Matt Manweller and Joe Schmick to help obtain the above mentioned $15 million in funding.

The purpose of the Odessa Groundwater Replacement Program is to provide surface water from the Federal Columbia Basin Project (CBP) to replace groundwater from declining irrigation wells in the Odessa Subarea, reduce the risk of economic loss to the region’s agriculture sector relying on declining and/or failing groundwater wells, and provide relief to the declining water levels in the Odessa subarea aquifer.

The North I-90 Odessa Aquifer Groundwater Replacement Project (which is part of the Odessa Groundwater Replacement Program) would help deep well irrigators/farmers in the declining Odessa Aquifer north of I-90 and east of Moses Lake in Washington State. The project would provide surface water from the East Columbia Basin Irrigation District’s “East Low Canal” by utilizing new canal turnouts infrastructure, new pump stations located at various locations along the Canal. This project will replace the groundwater pumping from the aquifer. 

Over the past 50 years, irrigation has taken place in the Odessa Subarea Aquifer in the northern Columbia Basin of Washington State. A large portion of the Subarea is located within the boundaries of the United States Bureau of Reclamation (BOR) Columbia Basin Project, with the landowners utilizing wells to irrigate their properties rather than water provided through Project facilities. Those wells have experienced serious water level declines that have adversely impacted pumping levels to the point that many wells have had to be deepened or abandoned. 

As a result, the North I-90 Odessa Aquifer Groundwater Replacement Project group has formed and momentum is growing to build a surface water irrigation system (the EL 22.1 System) north of I-90 & east of Moses Lake, WA which would serve up to several thousand acres of irrigated lands from the East Low Canal to at least Road T NE or as far as Road W

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