Groundwater Conservation District Facts

  • There are 99 groundwater conservation districts in Texas: 96 are confirmed (note: this estimate includes several districts that do not require confirmation) and three 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 48 square miles (Anderson County Underground Water 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 173 counties are either fully or partially within a groundwater conservation district.
  • There are 61 single-county districts in Texas, and 37 that cover more than one county.
  • While 96 of the 99 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 2008 was approximately 9.7 million acre-feet.
  • In the same year, 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 2008, Throckmorton County had the lowest amount of reported groundwater usage (28 acre-feet) and Hale County the highest (540,886 acre-feet).
  • The first groundwater management plan to be approved was the Gonzales County Underground Water Conservation District's plan in 1998.