Alcoa seeks permits for 24 new water wells

Alcoa is seeking permits to drill 24 new water wells on land it owns southwest of Rockdale.

The aluminum company is also asking the Post Oak Savannah Groundwater Conservation District (POSGCD) that it be allowed to also produce water from 32 of 60 “historic use” wells.

A publ ic hear ing on the requests before the POSGCD is set for 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 14, in the water conservation district’s Milano headquarters.

Some land owners in the area have questioned the purpose, and effects, of Alcoa’s water use.

In March, Alcoa submitted applications for drilling and operating permits to produce 25,000 acre feet of water for industrial use.

Jim Hodson, Alcoa spokesman, said none of the wells in questions are envisioned as “injection wells.”

“We’re not asking to put anything into the ground,” he said. “ The permit asks that we be allowed take something (water) out.”

Gary Westbrook POSGCD general manager, said the permits list a variety of different uses for the water sought by Alcoa.

“There’s certainly plenty of oversight on our (water district) part,” he said, noting that the water district is charged with protecting aquifers and calculating effects of such drilling if approved.

New wells sought range from FM 487 to the Lee County line.

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