2001 Regional Water Plan Overview
Basic Plan Facts
- Population in the 17-county area is projected to double between 2000 and 2050, reaching almost 9 million
- Total capital cost of proposed water supply measures: $6,162 million
- One new major reservoir (Lower Bois d'Arc Reservoir) and one new minor reservoir (Muenster Reservoir) proposed. An additional reservoir, Marvin Nichols I, is proposed in Region D primarily to supply this region's projected needs. Major diversions of flows from pristine rivers in eastern Oklahoma are also proposed.
What's at Issue?
Region C includes 12 of the 20 fastest-growing communities in Texas. This high rate of growth will put increasing pressure on the region's water sources. Another factor driving the high demands and projected needs for water resources is the region's projected high per capita use rates (some of the highest in the state). The proposed reservoirs will destroy bottomland hardwood forests. These forests support a large number and wide diversity of wildlife species and are a rapidly diminishing resource in the state.
Here are some of the items the Region C Planning Group must address.
Conservation and Drought Management
For conservation and drought management, the plan needs to...
- Recommend conservation measures as a management strategy to reduce high per capita use rates in the region. Region C has some of the highest municipal water use rates in the state. For example the City of Dallas is projected to increase from a current rate of 260 gpcd to 264 gpcd in 2050. With new technologies and reasonable policies, per person use rates should drop dramatically over the next 50 years. If the region focused on managing these demands, some of the most damaging proposed supply strategies, like the proposed Marvin Nichols I Reservoir in Region D, would not be needed.
- Include a drought management plan for limiting demand during water-short periods.
To secure the protection of flows for fish and wildlife, the plan needs to...
- Include discussion of how current water development projects and existing permits affect environmental flows.
- Fully assess the incremental impacts of new projects, especially proposed reservoirs, on environmental flows.
- Consider the impacts of proposed strategies to springs in the region.
- Designate stream segments in the region that meet the criteria as having "unique ecological value". No segments were designated in the 2001 regional plan. In fact, the recommended Lower Bois D'Arc Reservoir would be constructed on a stream segment that the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department recommended for protection. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department recommends 10 segments for designation in this region.
To ensure that only the most economically sound water supply strategies are implemented, the plan needs to...
- Compare the costs and benefits of the supply alternatives in a consistent and reasonable manner.
Regional water plan documents can be located on the TWDB website. Additional information may also be found on the region's website.
The National Wildlife Federation analyzed the initially prepared plan using their Principles for an Environmentally Sound Regional Water Plan. Please contact us for more information about this analysis.