Warning about aquifer’s decline sets up big fight in Kansas


              Kansas Geological Survey field research technician Connor Umbrell walks an irrigation well to measure the water level Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              Kansas Geological Survey field research technician Connor Umbrell measures water levels in an irrigation well Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              Kansas Geological Survey field research technician Connor Umbrell measures water levels in an irrigation well Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              Kansas Geological Survey field research technician Connor Umbrell, right, talks to Ben Zellner after measuring the water level in an irrigation on Zellner's farm Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              Ben Zellner walks back to his truck after checking on an irrigation well on his farm Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              Kansas Geological Survey field research technician Connor Umbrell measures water levels in an irrigation well Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              A yellow tag noting water levels is left on an unused irrigation well after the well's water level was measured by the Kansas Geological Survey Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)(AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              Kansas Geological Survey field research technician Connor Umbrell measures water levels in an irrigation well Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              Kansas Geological Survey field research technician Connor Umbrell, right, talks to Ben Zellner after measuring the water level in an irrigation on Zellner's farm Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              Ben Zellner looks at a tag showing a small decline in water levels in an unused irrigation well on his farm after it was measured by the Kansas Geological Survey Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Marienthal, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              A discarded couch litters the dry bed of the Arkansas River Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Garden City, Kan. The river in western Kansas is mostly dry after decades of extensive groundwater use and periodic droughts. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              A center pivot irrigation sprinkler is silhouetted against the sky at sunset as a drilling rig works to drill a new irrigation well in the distance Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Deerfield, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              A center pivot irrigation sprinkler is silhouetted against the sky at sunset Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Deerfield, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              A center pivot irrigation sprinkler stretches across a field Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Deerfield, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              The dry bed of the Arkansas River stretches towards the rising moon Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, in Deerfield, Kan. The river in western Kansas is mostly dry after decades of extensive groundwater use and periodic droughts. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              A center pivot irrigation sprinkler is silhouetted against the sky at sunset Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Deerfield, Kan. Lawmakers are looking to take up groundwater issues in western Kansas in the upcoming session as the Kansas Water Authority is urging stricter usage measures to try to slow the steady decline of water levels in the Ogallala Aquifer. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
            
              Lee Reeve poses for a photo at the cattle feedyard and ethanol plant operated by his family Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, near Garden City, Kan. Reeve sees language by the Kansas Water Authority on controlling groundwater use in western Kansas as "toxic,"as the Kansas Legislature looks to take up ways to address depletion of the Ogallala Aquifer in the upcoming session. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Warning about aquifer’s decline sets up big fight in Kansas