Fountain limits outdoor watering — The Pueblo Chieftain

Widefield aquifer via the Colorado Water Institute.
Widefield aquifer via the Colorado Water Institute.

From The Pueblo Chieftain (Chris Woodka):

City wants to avoid using wells that could become contaminated

Fountain restricts outdoor watering to avoid well use.

Fountain gets its primary water supply through the Fountain Valley Conduit from Lake Pueblo and other surface sources, but wants to avoid using wells from the Fountain Creek aquifer.

In May, the Environmental Protection Agency issued advisories for wells in the area south of Colorado Springs for chemicals known as PFOA and PFOS, which were used to make carpets, clothing, fabrics, cookware coatings and firefighting foam, particularly at airports.

Widefield, Security and Fountain are potentially affected, but all of the communities have other supplies and are not in crisis mode. Tests showed evidence of contamination in about one-third of Security’s wells, which were shut down. No contamination was found in Fountain.

“In an attempt to avoid using our well water as a last resort to meet peak demand, and to continue providing 100 percent surface water, we are asking our customers to conserve,” said Curtis Mitchell, utilities director.

Outside irrigation in Fountain will be limited to two days per week for city, residential and commercial uses.

“We will continue to monitor the water supply and water usage and keep the public updated,” Mitchell said.

How scary was Alaska’s early spring? Very — The High Country News

January to May global temperatures 2016 via NOAA.
January to May global temperatures 2016 via NOAA.

From The High Country News (Teresa Sundmark):

But now it seems there is evidence that our wish for a warmer climate has been granted. Two nearly snowless winters back-to-back have prompted many cross-country skiers to exchange their skinny skis for fat-tire bikes, and the local ATV dealerships have started displaying four-wheelers instead of snow machines. In fact, 2014 and 2015 were two of the warmest years on record for Alaska.

As if the fantastic summer of 2015 and mild winter that followed weren’t enough, spring in 2016 came a full six weeks earlier than it normally does. During the Memorial Day weekend, wildflowers bloomed everywhere. The snowline on the Kenai Mountains across the bay had already risen precipitously, and the kale in my garden has never grown higher. It seemed more like the Fourth of July than the end of May. I’ve spent 24 years in Alaska, and so this extra six weeks of summer feels something like winning the lottery or receiving a year-end bonus big enough to pay off the mortgage. I’m enjoying every minute of this newly extended summer.