Energy and Environment Reporting for Texas

LCRA Releases Draft of Water Plan

Paul Buck/AFP

A stock pond south of Dallas, TX, dries up due to drought.

Some big changes could be in play for water in Central Texas. The Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA), which manages water and some energy projects in the region, released a draft of its water plan today for the decades to come. As Texas continues to reel from a record drought while adding more people, some changes to water management are due.

What does the plan entail? Some bad news for rice farmers, Farzad Mashhood of the Austin American-Statesman takes a closer look:

“The plan would allow more flexible management of the river basin by the LCRA, such as setting separate triggers for allocating water to downstream rice farmers’ first and seconds crops. The current plan allocates water for rice farmers based on a Jan. 1 trigger point. (Emergency actions by the LCRA allowed them to break from the current plan and set different cutoffs for rice farmers, many of whom will likely be without LCRA water this year.)

The plan contains a two-phased curtailment procedure for all areas of the basin — farm irrigation, municipal use and environmental flows — that factors in expected changes in demand. The plan said the first phase is designed for “interim demands,” between 2010 to 2020, and the second is designed for 2020 demands.”

You can read more at the Statesman. And here is the document in full:


About StateImpact

StateImpact seeks to inform and engage local communities with broadcast and online news focused on how state government decisions affect your lives.
Learn More »