News Release from Senator Brownback's Office

Sam Brownback
United States Senator--Kansas
303 Hart Senate Office Building--Washington, DC 20510--(202) 224-8950

News Release
April 8, 2003


WASHINGTON--U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) was pleased with Senate passage of the High Plains Aquifer Hydrogeologic Characterization, Mapping, Modeling and Monitoring Act (S. 212) last night. Brownback and Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) reintroduced the legislation in January. The bill originally passed the Senate during the 107th Session of Congress, but was not taken up by the House. Last night, the bill passed the Senate without objection.

"This bill will help researchers across the High Plains states more fully understand the characterization of the Ogallala Aquifer," Brownback said. "Accurate information will lead to a better understanding of the aquifer and aid in achieving our ultimate goal of preserving the usable life of the Ogallala Aquifer.

"The Ogallala Aquifer is the lifeblood to so many producers in Kansas and across all the High Plains states. Any steps we can take to preserve the life of the aquifer are steps that help preserve the way of life that so many in Kansas cherish. Good stewardship of the land and its resources is one of my many goals in Congress.

"My involvement with saving North America's largest aquifer is a lifelong one. In my early days of public service as the Kansas Secretary of Agriculture, my conviction to sustaining the way of life dependent on the Ogallala resulted in the Kansas Agriculture Ogallala Task Force. Given the charge to explore all possible options for long-term conservation, the Ogallala Task Force brought forth many of the same ideas that we are fortunate to now be seeing action taken on through the combined effort of local and state governments, as well as Congress.

"S. 212 is another in a series of steps that I have been involved with in the preservation of the Ogallala Aquifer. This bill would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to cooperate with the High Plains Aquifer States in conducting a hydrogeologic characterization, mapping, modeling and monitoring program for the High Plains Aquifer. This kind of scientific data has not been collected comprehensively across the Aquifer in over 20 years. This type of data is needed so that we can accurately aim our efforts at preserving the Ogallala.

"I am pleased that my colleagues in the Senate have agreed, and look forward to members of the House passing this legislation as well," Brownback said.


Page updated April 18, 2003
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