This is Why the West Needs Water


Do you know what the men in this photo are doing? Pesticides? Really weird caddies? 

No, they are heating up the thorns on this particular cactus, which is commonly called “prickly pear.” When the heat’s applied, the thorns essentially melt off, leaving the fruit of the cactus. This is a desperate move in the West because it’s mostly done when trying to provide food for livestock during a drought and the cactus is the only vegetation left standing.

Now, the prickly pear doesn’t have much nutritional value for the cow, but it does have fiber and that helps the cow get through another day. In hopes that tomorrow, somehow, someway, the land can find some water.

We need better solutions than this. Right now, we have a unique opportunity in the West to because the oil industry is churning out millions of gallons of water that is being tossed away by injecting it into the ground. Instead, let’s process the water to match the soil’s needs and then let’s land apply that water for grassland or grazeland. 

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