Writing Contest

 More than 125 middle school students in Pflugerville ISD submitted essays for the recent SouthWest Water Company writing contest.


Thank you to all the students who entered and to the teachers who scored the contest.



SouthWest Water congratulates the contest finalists:

  • Itzel Macedo, Cele Middle School
  • My Nga Nguyen, Dessau Middle School
  • Kelly Abels, Kelly Lane Middle School
  • Yvans Tepondjou, Pflugerville Middle School
  • Giovanna Patron, Westview Middle School


And the grand-prize winners:

  • Coby Sims and Audrey Vaughan, Park Crest Middle School


Grand-Prize Winning Essay

“How Water Affects the World”
By: Coby Sims and Audrey Vaughan


Every single living thing on Earth needs water to survive. Be it an insect, a bird, a family pet, a family member or even the president, it needs water. Thus, saving water is essential to the survival of the human species as a whole. In ancient times, cities had to be located on the edges of rivers, lakes and streams for the community to be able to thrive. Without water, no society would be able to function in any way at all.


Because of climate changes all over the world, water is becoming scarce. The springs and aquifers that were once fueling nations are gone. This is affecting industries such as farming and ranching, everyday households and the many watery ecosystems around the world. Our swimming pools could dry up along with the rest of our lives.


We use water everywhere. We wash our hands, brush our teeth, shower, and dispose of our waste using water. With global warming inevitable, we need to make our water last. In the United States, people use over 20 gallons of water a day on average. Using this much water depletes our aquifers faster than they can recharge. Communities near rivers are affected as well. If they use too much water, the lakes and streams fueling their plumbing will dry up and leave them facing soil erosion and severe drought. Because of this, they may have to move away from their homes.  If the supply of water falls in any community around the world, human or non-human, the consequences are devastating. The water used to fill our pools is the water that we could be using to save lives.


A stable economy is vital for the survival of a country. But what happens when a furious drought wraps its strong arms around that country? Citywide drought is already serious enough. The entire nation being in a drought will not only affect that nation, but every other country in the world as well. That nation would have many problems to face that would bleed out into the rest of the world. Industries would shut down. Other industries that don’t use water would shut down because the people who were fired (there would be thousands) wouldn’t have the money to utilize their products. Avocado and many other plants would skyrocket in price. All this would start a chain reaction that could lead to another Great Depression. This time, it would be much more severe.


Drought is by all means very damaging, but an overload of water can be just as bad. Floods happen when a catastrophic amount of rain is dumped on a community. Everything is swept away, and it takes years to rebuild. Hundreds of lives can be lost, and those who survive have most likely lost their families, friends and belongings. Loss of life doesn’t even have to be directly caused by the flood. Floods cause uprooting of plants. Plants keep the dirt in place so the wind doesn’t carry it into the atmosphere. If the anchoring plants are lost, dirt is now free to enter the air via high winds. This could result in another Dust Bowl, causing more loss of life and livelihood.


The effects of loss water don’t start out very catastrophically. Mostly, it’ll just be an inconvenience before we get it under control. However, we should take care to abide by government rules and regulations so that we DO get the problem fixed. Disobeying government water regulations can result in a drought spiraling out of control, which causes massive problems such as the issues described above.


Having an inconvenience is better than having a full-scale drought, but waiting until drought-like conditions set in to conserve water isn’t a long-term solution. In order to make sure we don’t even start to border drought conditions, we need to save water every single day of our lives. This ensures that the earth retains enough water to support all the communities it hosts without them having to plunge into hardcore water saving programs every once in a while.


Water is the one thing every living organism needs. Without it, cities crumble and nations turn to dust. Our industries depend on water for success. We depend on water for convenience as well as survival. Water, at any given moment, affects every single living thing on Earth.