If you visit a grocery store today you will probably see bottles and jugs of water flying off the shelves as people prepare for the upcoming winter storm. Precipitation, also known as water falling from the sky, is the cause of concern for many in our area. Falling water makes us buy bottles of stationary water. It is a funny coincidence, yet at the same time an often overlooked truth is perfectly reflected in our actions; water is precious. Without a steady supply from our faucets , we would be lost. I do not encourage an attitude of panic at the upcoming winter storm, nor do I encourage recklessness in the face of adverse weather; all I ask is a moment reflection.

Boardwalk and Fishing Piers at the Watershed Center

Beyond this storm, imagine what other measures we could take to prepare ourselves. We have seen winter storms before. The energy in the air today is not necessarily from fear of the unknown, but from an idea of what may happen and an appreciation of what winter storms do. As we approach this summer, will we feel a similar vibe throughout the community? For many of us, drought has been a fairly foreign idea; something other countries deal with, something that only affects you if you live in a desert state. However we were enlightened last summer with near emergency low levels of water, realizing very quickly that we are not immune from the possibility of water scarcity. Will we prepare ourselves for the warm and dry months as well as we do for the cold, wet ones? The truth is that we are even better equipped to deal with a problem like drought. We can see it coming a long way off. Rather than buying up all of the bottled water we can lay our hands on, we can store up rainwater through the spring. We can focus on hydration instead of drainage as we develop new parts of the landscape, and encourage the replenishment of our great underground bank account called the Ozark Aquifer.  We can conserve water many ways in our homes. Conserving now is what’s wise for the future. We can all play a part in being secure in our resources as the summer months approach and maybe avoid the pantry packing panic that we see today.

Rob Hunt
Watershed Center Coordinator

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