SAN ANGELO, TX -- Lake water from the Twin Buttes reservoir is flowing through Lake Nasworthy and down the irrigation canal to thirsty cotton fields near Veribest for the first time in about ten years.
Farmers in the Tom Green County Water Control and Improvement District #1 use all the City of San Angelo's waste water to irrigate 10,000 acres of cotton fields each year and since Twin Buttes now has 138,165 acre feet, farmers in the district have the right to 10,000 acre feet this irrigation season.
The farmers have the right to water in Twin Buttes because in the early 1960's, 120 farmers put up their farms as collateral so the Bureau of Reclamation would build Twin Buttes dam and the 65 miles of concrete lined irrigation canals east of San Angelo.
The City of San Angelo had requested the Bureau of Reclamation build the dam for municipal water use. Federal law required the reservoir to have more than one use; municipal, irrigation or electricity production. The farmers agreed to repay the Bureau for canal construction while the City agreed to repay the Bureau for dam construction and Twin Buttes was built.
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Twin Buttes Reservoir was completed in 1962 but didn't fill up until 1972 when the first water was gravity fed down the canal to the cotton fields.
The irrigation canal begins at the Lake Nasworthy dam and goes east. The boundaries of the District are FM 765 and Loop 306, the Concho River, and FM 1692.
Over 40 percent of irrigated cotton raised in Tom Green County are in the District.
Farmers in the District continue to repay the Bureau of Reclamation until 2031.