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People in this Arizona town say a new clean energy project will drain their wells

The battle over who gets to use often dwindling rural groundwater in Arizona continues, and attention has turned to La Paz County.

There, outside of a tiny town called Brenda, Arizona, a Southern California company called Heliogen is asking the federal government to let it use groundwater from a stressed basin to create a clean energy fuel. 

It’s called "green hydrogen" — and it’s a complicated process, involving an array of mirrors pointing toward a central tower that would use solar power to coax liquid hydrogen for carbon-free fuel from the water underground. 

But, the people who live near this proposed project say it will drain their wells. And they weren’t informed that this wouldn’t be your average solar energy project. 

The Arizona Republic’s Brandon Loomis reported the story, and The Show spoke with him about it. 

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Lauren Gilger, host of KJZZ's The Show, is an award-winning journalist whose work has impacted communities large and small, exposing injustices and giving a voice to the voiceless and marginalized.