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Pavillion Cistern Program To Receive Money For Water Delivery

(credit: Environmental Protection Agency)

Governor Matt Mead is committing $400,000 dollars for water delivery to households with cisterns in the Pavillion area. Residents have long complained of unusable well water, which some blame on nearby natural gas development. The money is part of a grant from Encana Oil and Gas, which operates in the Pavillion gas field.

19 cisterns are currently being installed, with another 13 households signed up.

The Governor’s Natural Resources Policy Advisor, Jerimiah Rieman, says residents will meet later this week to discuss how to use the money.

“If the residents elected to have that water delivered to them for roughly 4,000 gallons a month, that would carry them roughly 8 years,” Rieman says. “But if they elected to deliver that water themselves that water can stretch out into 20-25 years. Again, it’s really dependent on the conversation we’re going to have in the days ahead with the residents.”

Rieman says it’s still unclear if there are sufficient funds to install cisterns for everyone interested, but the legislature’s Select Water Committee has asked the for $150,000 dollars just to be on the safe side.

All interested households must sign up for a cistern by February 23rd.

Irina Zhorov is a reporter for Wyoming Public Radio. She earned her BA from the University of Pennsylvania and an MFA from the University of Wyoming. In between, she worked as a photographer and writer for Philadelphia-area and national publications. Her professional interests revolve around environmental and energy reporting and she's reported on mining issues from Wyoming, Mexico, and Bolivia. She's been supported by the Dick and Lynn Cheney Grant for International Study, the Eleanor K. Kambouris Grant, and the Social Justice Research Center Research Grant for her work on Bolivian mining and Uzbek alpinism. Her work has appeared on Voice of America, National Native News, and in Indian Country Today, among other publications.
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