Groundwater Conservation District Facts

  • There are 98 groundwater conservation districts in Texas: 96 are confirmed (note: this estimate includes several districts that do not require confirmation) and two have yet to be confirmed by voters through local elections.
  • The first district (High Plains Underground Water Conservation District No. 1 was created in the Texas Panhandle in 1951.
  • The smallest district covers an area of about 114 square miles (Red Sands Groundwater Conservation District) and the largest district (High Plains Underground Water Conservation District No. 1) an area of approximately 12,000 square miles.
  • A total of 176 counties are either fully or partially within a confirmed or unconfirmed groundwater conservation district (excluding Subsidence Districts).
  • There are 58 single-county districts in Texas, and 40 that cover more than one county.
  • While 95 of the 98 existing districts overlie a major aquifer, only 65 of these districts overlie a minor aquifer.
  • The total reported groundwater usage in the entire State in the year 2012 was approximately 9.97 million acre-feet.
  • In 2008, the total reported groundwater usage in all the districts (confirmed and unconfirmed) in the State was approximately 8.3 million acre-feet.
  • Districts over the Ogallala aquifer accounted for approximately 5.6 million acre-feet of this usage.
  • In 2012, Rockwall County had the lowest amount of reported groundwater usage (95 acre-feet) and Dallam County the highest (503,445 acre-feet).
  • The first groundwater management plan to be approved was the Gonzales County Underground Water Conservation District's plan in 1998.