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Texas Water Conservation Scorecard

May 2016

The Texas Water Conservation Scorecard is the first-of-its-kind in-depth analysis and ranking of the water conservation efforts of more than 300 water utilities in Texas. Based on publicly available information, the Scorecard reveals a wide disparity of effort and information on what is being done to conserve the Lone Star state’s most precious resource: water.

The Scorecard is an evaluation of utilities based largely on their level of effort to advance water conservation, and to a lesser extent on their achievements. Scoring criteria included a utility’s compliance with water conservation planning and reporting requirements, its record on water loss and meeting targets for water use reduction, outdoor watering limits, and rate-based incentives for efficient use of water. Large and medium-size utilities (serving 25,000 customers or more) were evaluated on ten criteria while smaller utilities (serving less than 25,000) were rated on six criteria.

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PDF of Scorecard

Facts About Texas Water (English & Spanish)

May 2016

The 2nd edition of Facts About Texas Water is available in English and Spanish.  Facts About Texas Water is intended to give all Texans—young and old, urban and rural— basic information about water that will help us understand this important resource and how to use and protect it.  Facts About Texas Water was prepared for the 7th/8th grade student, but is useful to all Texans that want to learn basic information about your water supply and how to appreciate, conserve, and protect this valuable resource.

Download PDF – English

Download PDF – Spanish

We have a limited amount of printed copies available free of charge for educational activities.  Please contact us to inquire about availability.

 

Water conservation by the yard-estimated savings from outdoor watering restrictions

March 2015

Outdoor water use, particularly lawn watering, accounts for almost one third of annual residential water use in Texas, and can represent a much higher percentage during our hot, dry summers. Studies show that homeowners have a tendency to overwater landscapes by as much as two to three times the amount needed.

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Desalination: Is it Worth its Salt?

November 2013

Desalination is often viewed as a solution to many water supply problems and is often hailed as a ‘drought resistant’ supply. This report explores the environmental, energy, and economic issues surrounding desalination and provides an overview of desalination activities in Texas.

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@txwater

opinion

Paciorek and Stokes: Can Texas get desalination right?

July 15, 2016

Despite numerous logistical challenges, desalination of ocean water does hold real promise for Texas as a supplement to existing water supplies. The real issue is whether state rules for development of desalination plants will provide sufficient protections for our bays and coastal wildlife.

Sometimes it seems Galveston Bay can’t buy a break. During the 2010–2015 drought, the vital flow of fresh water from our rivers and bayous to our bay slowed to a trickle, imperiling commercial fisheries and wildlife as salinity levels rose. In recent months, we have seen the opposite. Historic floods have upset the balance of fresh and salty water that most bay creatures depend on, killing oysters with too much fresh water and washing tons of pollutants into the bay.

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Brush control no help for water supplies, lake sedimentation

Texas A&M Agrilife, July 13, 2016

COLLEGE STATION – Brush control has many benefits, including restoration of wildlife habitat and potentially improved livestock grazing, but water supply enhancement should not necessarily be considered one of them.

That’s the conclusion of a new Texas A&M AgriLife Research study published in Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, which looked at 85 years of data and investigated impacts of dramatic landscape change on rangeland water resources in Central Texas.

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Conference Materials: SWIFT Funding Workshop: Focus on Water Conservation Projects

The REC of Grapevine
1175 Municipal Way
Grapevine, TX 76051
June 23, 2016
10 AM - 2:30 PM

The SWIFT Funding workshop covered topics on evaluating options to take advantage of SWIFT funding for water conservation. These topics were based on questions such as: Is your utility considering whether SWIFT funding from the Texas Water Development Board is an appropriate funding source to for managing your water supplies? Fellow colleagues presented on the ins and outs […]

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Lawyers Say Ruling Bad For Landowners

Texas Tribune, June 4, 2016

Last week, agriculture and landowner groups heralded a Texas Supreme Court ruling favoring a South Plains ranch as a major win for private property rights, but some lawyers and conservationists are painting the decision as more of a win for developers and water marketers.

The unanimous ruling, issued last Friday, expanded a 45-year-old tenet of oil and gas law that enables “surface” landowners who don’t own the minerals beneath their property to force drillers to accommodate their existing use of the land. The 18-page ruling said the so-called “accommodation doctrine” — established by a 1971 state Supreme Court ruling — also should apply in cases in which landowners don’t own the groundwater under their property.

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What San Antonio should learn from Melbourne

San Antonio Express News, May 29, 2016

San Antonio just made it through one of the worst droughts in Texas history. Climate change means we’ll have more — unpredictably longer and more intense. Is San Antonio prepared? Nope. And the San Antonio Water System is leading us the wrong direction.

Express-News staff writer Brendan Gibbons’ recent front-page article about summer water consumption between 2011 and 2015 gives clues about why. Drought preparedness requires real conservation — ongoing commitment to keeping all the water we have, and guarding our aquifers and their recharge zones.

How well did San Antonians do?

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