Water planning and management in Texas is necessary to prepare for future weather events that affect water resources and to ensure enough water is available for future generations of families and businesses. Continued economic prosperity and quality of life depend on the successful implementation of water management strategies designed to conserve and bolster our state’s water supply to meet growing demand.
2020 and 2050,
is estimated to
increase from 29 million
to 47 million people,
all of whom will need
reliable and clean water
sources to lead healthy
Every five years the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) releases an updated State Water Plan (SWP) designed to guide Texas water policy and assess regional water supplies and needs 50 years into the future.
The TWDB estimates that Texas’ existing water supply — which consists of surface water, groundwater and water reuse (i.e., wastewater) —
will decline by eighteen Percent
between 2020 and 2070.
The TWDB estimates that Texas’ total water demand will increase by 8.5 percent between 2020 and 2070. However, demand differs greatly by water use category over this period.
Projected to Increase
Projected to Remain Constant
Projected to Decrease
*Due to a variety of factors such as precision agriculture tools that save water and the reduced availability of groundwater.
|Reduction in Demand*||50.9%||30.9%|
Sources: Texas Water Development Board; Texas Demographic Center
Water management strategies are designed to increase water supply and/or reduce water demand to address potential shortages.
More than two-thirds (69%) of the strategies recommended in the state water plan rely on creating additional water
such as surface water or groundwater, while the remaining strategies focus on reducing the demand for water (e.g., conservation activities).
*Reduction in demand is projected to come from agricultural, municipal and other conservation efforts.
The TWDB estimates that implementing the recommended water management strategy projects (i.e., new infrastructure) will require $80 billion in capital costs over the next 50 years — and $47 billion of that is expected to come from state financial assistance programs.
The State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT), the largest of those programs, has committed nearly $9.2 billion in financial assistance for 58 recommended projects since the program began in 2015.
Check out our June/July edition of Fiscal Notes for a detailed look at the 2022 State Water Plan and some of the innovative water management strategies in Texas.
This is one in a series of reports the Comptroller has prepared on water in Texas.
Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
If you have any questions or concerns regarding the material on this page, please contact the Comptroller’s Data Analysis and Transparency Division.