For over 140 years, the Laramie-area community has depended on the Casper Aquifer for its drinking water. Fortunately, during the last 30 years the community has gradually become aware of the importance of groundwater to the City and rural water users. Community engagement in aquifer protection began in 1993 when the City conducted a wellhead protection study under the auspices of the Safe Drinking Water Act. Since then, public understanding and concern for aquifer protection has only grown, and county and city authorities have established a series of plans and regulations. Following this interest the City and County adopted the original Casper Aquifer Protection Plan in 2001, with updates completed by the City and County in 2008 and 2011 respectively. Beginning in 2022, the City and County jointly developed and worked on a plan update, conducted by Stantec, that was eventually adopted by the City and County.
The Casper Aquifer supplies approximately 55% of the drinking water for the 31,317 residents of the City of Laramie and 100% for many of the nearby residents of Albany County. The aquifer is vulnerable to contamination from overlying land uses across the recharge area, and along the western margin in areas where the typically protective Satanka Shale has been compromised because of fracturing. Due to the highly faulted, fractured, cavernous, and folded nature of the Casper Aquifer along with natural drainages, a contaminant introduced at the ground surface might easily enter the aquifer and move rapidly away from the entry point. Once contaminated, aquifers are difficult and expensive to remediate and municipalities or responsible parties may have to pay for site studies, remediation, and property damage. Protecting our precious water supply is critical to maintaining our quality of life, and thus the City of Laramie and Albany County have jointly adopted the Casper Aquifer Protection Plan for the future of Laramie, Albany County and it’s Citizens.
Casper Aquifer Protection Plan Update 2023 - Adopted Plan
Approved by the City of Laramie and Albany County on July 5, 2023 a jointly adopted plan has been approved. You can view the full plan at the following link: Casper Aquifer Protection Plan Update 2023