The Lower Loup Natural Resources District has approved a higher level of groundwater management for Township 23 North, Range 9 West in Wheeler County. The unanimous vote, creating the District’s first water quality sub-area, came at the LLNRD’s monthly board meeting on June 27th.
Phase II groundwater management in the township was triggered by high nitrate readings in the area, now known as Water Quality Sub-Area 29. Readings up to 38.3 parts per million (ppm), well above the federal limit of 10 ppm, were found in the Lower Loup NRD’s last water sampling reports.
The Lower Loup NRD held a public hearing on the management changes in Bartlett on June 18th. There was no public testimony presented at the hearing.
Phase II management will include a requirement for flow meters on all irrigation wells, certification classes for all nitrogen applicators, no fall or winter fertilizer applications on sandy soils, annual soil and water sample requirements, and annual reporting of fertilizer use.
Landowners and producers in the township will be notified of the updated requirements for the new management area. The new requirements will begin January 1, 2020.