FAQ #3: How much water will be used and where will you get it?
During the test this coming summer, a total of up to 24 million gallons (74 acre-feet) of water will be used over a 3 week period. How much water is that? It’s about 3 hundredths of one percent (0.0003) of the estimated annual recharge to the Deschutes Basin from the west flank of Newberry volcano (73 billion gallons or 224,000 acre-feet), or about the amount of water that Bend uses on a single summer day.
AltaRock and Davenport have a limited-use license from the Oregon Water Resources Department (OWRD) that allows the use of groundwater from two existing shallow water wells (600 to 800 feet deep), both of which are capable of supporting the project’s water demands. No water from the lakes in the caldera, Paulina Creek, or domestic supplies will be used.
An independent hydrology study completed in February 2011 found that there would be no significant effects to the groundwater levels beyond the immediate test area, far from wells used by local residents several miles down the mountain.
Previous FAQ: What chemicals will be injected into the ground?