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Podeyn: Together, we can help preserve Arizona’s dwindling water supply


My name is Scott Podeyn and I am the Democratic Nominee for the State House of Representatives.

I’m a retired Air Force aircraft maintainer and weapons loader, but I’m also a trained Earth scientist.

I swore an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of The United States 40 years ago. I have never wavered from my oath. I’m ready to serve the people of my House District but all of the people of Arizona.

We all know it’s getting hotter and dryer. We know how weather used to be and how it is now. Long-term changes in the weather is the definition of climate. Climate change is just getting started (this is not politics just a fact). We are facing a climate closer to the Persian Gulf region than what we are accustomed. The amount of water on earth is finite. What’s available is all there is.

So, what do I suggest we do about that and continue to live in our Valley? What can I do from the State House of Representatives?

First, craft a bill that allows for the development of a tax rebate plan for agriculture to put in place changes to how they irrigate and cover irrigation canals.

Craft legislation to give incentives to municipalities to change over to drip irrigation. Change building codes so that every new industrial and large apartment construction project must include the planting of native species on the roof to help reduce the urban heat island affect and also collect greenhouse gases.

We must convert gray water into potable water at our waste treatment sites. I want to work with the state engineer and the state water commissions as well as the Central Arizona Project commission to try and save as much of the 20,000-plus acre-feet of water lost to evaporation (one acre-foot is one acre under one foot of water).

By the time the CAP water reaches the Valley and Tucson, the mineral content of the water is too high to drink. The untreated water is mineral water on steroids. I’ll work on a bill to provide funding to cover the canal system and recharge our aquifers. Fund the recovery of high salt content ground water sources for use. These wells will need desalination before use.

Yes, it’s a big issue, but one that if we work together, we can stretch every drop of water. Our green space areas should be composed of native species; including our flood catchment basins.

We must reduce the use of overseeding during winter months. When you finish that bottle of sports drink, water or soda don’t put the cap back on.

Let the water return to the system instead of being buried in a landfill.

Use your dishwasher with a full load instead of washing in the sink. Run full loads of laundry.

Turn off the water while brushing and just rinse once. Turn off your automatic watering system the day after a rain storm.

You can also save water by watering every other day instead of daily.

About the author

Scott Podeyn is a Democratic candidate for the Arizona House of Representatives for Legislative District 29.