Login | Register
 
Home
About Us
Contact Us
Calendar
 
Board of Directors
Environment
Boat Parades
Community Outreach
News
Merchandise
Mouth
River Facts
Newsletter
Photo Albums
Volunteers
Youth Programs
Fundraiser
Community Center
Sponsors
Discussion Forum
Archives
Request Manager
 
 
News
 

Return to List
Life Along the Banks: Saltwater Dam
Posted on Nov 21st, 2012

 
The Phillips 66 (ConocoPhillips/Phillips Petroleum) saltwater inclusion dam, located two miles upstream from Hanson County Park, separates the tidal and non-tidal portions of the San Bernard watershed. The purpose of the dam is to prevent saltwater from the Gulf from reaching the upper portions of the San Bernard that supplies water to Phillips 66 for industrial uses. Known then as Phillips Petroleum, it purchased the river rights to the San Bernard from Texas Gulf. 
 
Photos Courtesy: Neal McLain
 
 
During the last couple of years of drought, the water stopped flowing over the dam and ever since has flowed through pipes located beneath the dam (red circle). You can see a photo of the dam as it used to look, above in the website masthead.
 
(the original water rights application appears below)
 
Phillips Petroleum Water Rights Application 
 
PHILLIPS 66 COMPANY Sweeny Refinery & Petrochemical Complex; Application Number 13-3423A to amend Certificate of Adjudication Number 13-3423 pursuant to sec.11.122, Texas Water Code, and TNRCC Rules 30 TAC sec.sec.295.1, et seq. The Certificate authorized applicant to:
 
(A) maintain a saltwater barrier on the San Bernard River, Brazos-Colorado Coastal Basin, for the purpose of creating a pumping pool,
 
(B) maintain four off-channel reservoirs (referred to as Reservoir Nos. 1, 2, 3, and Markle Lake), and
 
(C) divert not to exceed 25,802 acre-feet of water per annum from the pumping pool at a maximum rate of 139 cubic feet per second to the off-channel reservoirs for subsequent industrial use at the Sweeney oil refinery approximately 20 miles southwest of Angleton, Texas in Brazoria County.
 
The time priority of the right to divert and use water and the use of Reservoir Number 1 is April 4, 1956.
The time priority for Reservoir Number 2 is May 25, 1964,
and the time priority for Reservoir Number 3 and Markle Lake is August 29, 1977.
 
The certificate also includes a special condition indicating that pumping operation must be conducted such that the water elevation in the pumping pool will not be reduced below mean sea level. In addition, the certificate includes a condition that allows use of stored groundwater in Markle Lake for subsequent diversion and use. Applicant is seeking to amend Certificate of Adjudication Number 13-3423 by increasing the amount of water authorized for diversion from the pumping pool from 25,802 acre-feet per annum to 32,000 acre-feet per annum. No other changes are requested in the application.
 
Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission
Filed: April 18, 2000
Notice of Water Rights Application
 
Notice is given that H & L NEW GULF INC, P.O. Box 686, Graham, Texas 76450, applicant, seeks to amend Certificate of Adjudication No. 3421-B, pursuant to 11.122 and 11.042, Texas Water Code, and Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission Rules 30 TAC 295.1, et seq. Certificate of Adjudication No. 13-3421 was issued to Texas Gulf, Inc on February 7, 1985, and authorized the owner, with a time priority of September 13, 1928, to maintain an existing dam and reservoir on the San Bernard River and to impound therein not to exceed 2 acre-feet of water, to maintain an existing off-channel reservoir and to impound therein not to exceed 2150 acre-feet of water, and to divert and use not to exceed 20,000 acre- feet of water per annum from the San Bernard River, Brazos-Colorado Coastal Basin, at a maximum rate of 40,000 gpm (88.89 cfs) for mining purposes in the Seth Ingram Survey, Abstract No. 33, Wharton County, Texas. The certificate, as amended twice, includes mining, municipal, irrigation and industrial use of the authorized water.
 
The certificate, as amended, is currently owned by H & L New Gulf Inc., a Texas Corporation, Leonard Wittig Grass Farms., Inc, a Texas Corporation and Newgulf Power Ventures Inc. H & L New Gulf's share of the certificate, as amended, includes authorization to impound 1.74 acre-feet of water in the on-channel reservoir, to impound 1914.5 acre-feet of water in the off-channel reservoir and to divert not to exceed 17,400 acre-feet of water per annum at a maximum rate of 20,000 gpmfrom a specific point on the San Bernard River for mining, municipal and industrial purposes and into the off-channel reservoir for subsequent use.
 
Pursuant to a sales option agreement between the applicant and Phillips Petroleum Company, the applicant seeks authorization to amend the certificate:
  1. to change the purpose of use of 16,400 acre-feet per annum of their water currently authorized for mining, municipal, irrigation and municipal purposes to industrial purposes;
  2. to add a diversion point on the San Bernard River approximately 15 river miles downstream at the diversion point authorized by Phillips Petroleum Company's Certificate of Adjudication No. 13-3423 at their Petroleum Refinery and Petrochemical Complex at Sweeny, Texas;
  3. to change the place of use of the water to the Phillips complex at Sweeny;
  4. to allow use from the additional diversion point of "run of the river" water, and
  5. to allow use from the additional diversion point of water diverted from the up-stream point into the off-channel reservoir and diverted back into the River and conveyed via the bed and banks of the river to the additional diversion point. Applicant has indicated that they will meter the quantity of water diverted from the San Bernard River into the off-channel reservoir for storage and monitor the amount and quality of water diverted back into the San Bernard for transport downstream, pursuant to the "bed and bank" provision of this amendment application, for diversion at the Phillips petrochemical complex in Sweeny, Texas. Applicant has also indicated that they will account for carriage losses during transportation of the water to the new diversion point. No other changes to the certificate is requested. This notice is being sent to you as owner of one of 4 water right holders with a diversion point in the San Bernard River Watershed between the existing diversion point and the requested additional diversion point. Any proposed amendment for "run of the river" water requested in the application at the additional diversion point by the Executive Director will include a condition that it be junior in priority to these 6 water rights on the river in the Brazos-Colorado Coastal Basin.
 
 
Comments
Add Comment
No Comments

 

 
© Copyright 2017 Friends Of the River San Bernard | Condo Website by HOA Sites | Terms of Use | Admin