Protecting our water

Gerald Fredriksen Sr., Minot

I have owned property at Rice Lake, in Ward County, for 21 years. There have been some bad drainage decisions, made by people at Rice Lake, and these poor decisions could affect Douglas Aquifer forever.

In August 2012 a vote by Rice Lake property owners approved an underground pipe to drain Rice Lake to the Missouri River.

I feel that because Rice Lake sits on top of Douglas Aquifer, you can’t drain Rice Lake without affecting the aquifer, which covers about 45 square miles and has a huge impact on rural property owners. These people have made a living off this land through their hard work and struggles with N.D. extreme climate changes.

Some of these families are four generation and have used this water from wells for their needs, their animals’ needs, irrigation of crops and trees, and outlying watersheds fed by the aquifer are used by cattle and wildlife.

I feel that all rural taxpayers affected by Douglas Aquifer should have been involved through public meetings and other plannings and should have been allowed to vote on this most important matter, dealing with our most important resource water.

Let’s not forget the Dirty 30s and other dry years. Let’s remember how important water is to life.