|(a) RWPGs shall identify and evaluate potentially feasible
WMSs and the WMSPs required to implement those strategies for all
WUGs and WWPs with identified Water Needs.
(b) RWPGs shall identify potentially feasible WMSs
to meet water supply needs identified in §357.33 of this title
(relating to Needs Analysis: Comparison of Water Supplies and Demands)
in accordance with the process in §357.12(b) of this title (relating
to General Regional Water Planning Group Responsibilities and Procedures).
Strategies shall be developed for WUGs and WWPs. The strategies shall
meet new water supply obligations necessary to implement recommended
WMSs of WWPs and WUGs. RWPGs shall plan for water supply during Drought
of Record conditions. In developing RWPs, RWPGs shall provide WMSs
to be used during a Drought of Record.
(c) Potentially feasible WMSs may include, but are
not limited to:
(1) Expanded use of existing supplies including system
optimization and conjunctive use of water resources, reallocation
of reservoir storage to new uses, voluntary redistribution of water
resources including contracts, water marketing, regional water banks,
sales, leases, options, subordination agreements, and financing agreements,
subordination of existing water rights through voluntary agreements,
enhancements of yields of existing sources, and improvement of water
quality including control of naturally occurring chlorides.
(2) New supply development including construction and
improvement of surface water and groundwater resources, brush control,
precipitation enhancement, seawater desalination, brackish groundwater
desalination, water supply that could be made available by cancellation
of water rights based on data provided by the Commission, rainwater
harvesting, and aquifer storage and recovery.
(3) Conservation and Drought Management Measures including
(4) Reuse of wastewater.
(5) Interbasin Transfers of Surface Water.
(6) Emergency transfers of surface water including
a determination of the part of each water right for non-municipal
use in the RWPA that may be transferred without causing unreasonable
damage to the property of the non-municipal water rights holder in
accordance with Texas Water Code §11.139 (relating to Emergency
(d) All recommended WMSs and WMSPs that are entered
into the State Water Planning Database and prioritized by RWPGs shall
be designed to reduce the consumption of water, reduce the loss or
waste of water, improve the efficiency in the use of water, or develop,
deliver or treat additional water supply volumes to WUGs or WWPs in
at least one planning decade such that additional water is available
during Drought of Record conditions. Any other RWPG recommendations
regarding permit modifications, operational changes, and/or other
infrastructure that are not designed to reduce the consumption of
water, reduce the loss or waste of water, improve the efficiency in
the use of water, or develop, deliver or treat additional water supply
volumes to WUGs or WWPs in at least one Planning Decade such that
additional water is available during Drought of Record conditions
shall be indicated as such and presented separately in the RWP and
shall not be eligible for funding from the State Water Implementation
Fund for Texas.
(e) Evaluations of potentially feasible WMSs and associated
WMSPs shall include the following analyses:
(1) For the purpose of evaluating potentially feasible
WMSs, the Commission's most current Water Availability Model with
assumptions of no return flows and full utilization of senior water
rights, is to be used. Alternative assumptions may be used with written
approval from the EA who shall consider a written request from an
RWPG to use assumptions other than no return flows and full utilization
of senior water rights.
(2) An equitable comparison between and consistent
evaluation and application of all WMSs the RWPGs determine to be potentially
feasible for each water supply need.
(3) A quantitative reporting of:
(A) The net quantity, reliability, and cost of water
delivered and treated for the end user's requirements during Drought
of Record conditions, taking into account and reporting anticipated
strategy water losses, incorporating factors used in calculating infrastructure
debt payments and may include present costs and discounted present
value costs. Costs do not include distribution of water within a WUG
(B) Environmental factors including effects on environmental
water needs, wildlife habitat, cultural resources, and effect of upstream
development on bays, estuaries, and arms of the Gulf of Mexico. Evaluations
of effects on environmental flows shall include consideration of the
Commission's adopted environmental flow standards under 30 Texas Administrative
Code Chapter 298 (relating to Environmental Flow Standards for Surface
Water). If environmental flow standards have not been established,
then environmental information from existing site-specific studies,
or in the absence of such information, state environmental planning
criteria adopted by the Board for inclusion in the State Water Plan
after coordinating with staff of the Commission and the Texas Parks
and Wildlife Department to ensure that WMSs are adjusted to provide
for environmental water needs including instream flows and bays and
(C) Impacts to agricultural resources.
(4) Discussion of the plan's impact on other water
resources of the state including other WMSs and groundwater and surface
(5) A discussion of each threat to agricultural or
natural resources identified pursuant to §357.30(7) of this title
(relating to Description of the Regional Water Planning Area) including
how that threat will be addressed or affected by the WMSs evaluated.
(6) If applicable, consideration and discussion of
the provisions in Texas Water Code §11.085(k)(1) for Interbasin
Transfers of Surface Water. At minimum, this consideration shall include
a summation of Water Needs in the basin of origin and in the receiving
(7) Consideration of third-party social and economic
impacts resulting from voluntary redistributions of water including
analysis of third-party impacts of moving water from rural and agricultural
(8) A description of the major impacts of recommended
WMSs on key parameters of water quality identified by RWPGs as important
to the use of a water resource and comparing conditions with the recommended
WMSs to current conditions using best available data.
(9) Consideration of water pipelines and other facilities
that are currently used for water conveyance as described in §357.22(a)(3)
of this title (relating to General Considerations for Development
of Regional Water Plans).
(10) Other factors as deemed relevant by the RWPG including
(f) RWPGs shall evaluate and present potentially feasible
WMSs and WMSPs with sufficient specificity to allow state agencies
to make financial or regulatory decisions to determine consistency
of the proposed action before the state agency with an approved RWP.
(g) If an RWPG does not recommend aquifer storage and
recovery strategies, seawater desalination strategies, or brackish
groundwater desalination strategies it must document the reason(s)
in the RWP.
(h) In instances where an RWPG has determined there
are significant identified Water Needs in the RWPA, the RWP shall
include an assessment of the potential for aquifer storage and recovery
to meet those Water Needs. Each RWPG shall define the threshold to
determine whether it has significant identified Water Needs. Each
RWP shall include, at a minimum, a description of the methodology
used to determine the threshold of significant needs. If a specific
assessment is conducted, the assessment may be based on information
from existing studies and shall include minimum parameters as defined
in contract guidance.
(i) Conservation, Drought Management Measures, and
Drought Contingency Plans shall be considered by RWPGs when developing
the regional plans, particularly during the process of identifying,
evaluating, and recommending WMSs. RWPs shall incorporate water conservation
planning and drought contingency planning in the RWPA.
(1) Drought Management Measures including water demand
management. RWPGs shall consider Drought Management Measures for each
need identified in §357.33 of this title and shall include such
measures for each user group to which Texas Water Code §11.1272
(relating to Drought Contingency Plans for Certain Applicants and
Water Right Holders) applies. Impacts of the Drought Management Measures
on Water Needs must be consistent with guidance provided by the Commission
in its administrative rules implementing Texas Water Code §11.1272.
If an RWPG does not adopt a drought management strategy for a need
it must document the reason in the RWP. Nothing in this paragraph
shall be construed as limiting the use of voluntary arrangements by
water users to forgo water usage during drought periods.
(2) Water conservation practices. RWPGs must consider
water conservation practices, including potentially applicable best
management practices, for each identified Water Need.
(A) RWPGs shall include water conservation practices
for each user group to which Texas Water Code §11.1271 and §13.146
(relating to Water Conservation Plans) apply. The impact of these
water conservation practices on Water Needs must be consistent with
requirements in appropriate Commission administrative rules related
to Texas Water Code §11.1271 and §13.146.
(B) RWPGs shall consider water conservation practices
for each WUG beyond the minimum requirements of subparagraph (A) of
this paragraph, whether or not the WUG is subject to Texas Water Code §11.1271
and §13.146. If RWPGs do not adopt a Water Conservation Strategy
to meet an identified need, they shall document the reason in the
(C) For each WUG or WWP that is to obtain water from
a proposed interbasin transfer to which Texas Water Code §11.085
(relating to Interbasin Transfers) applies, RWPGs shall include a
Water Conservation Strategy, pursuant to Texas Water Code §11.085(l),
that will result in the highest practicable level of water conservation
and efficiency achievable. For these strategies, RWPGs shall determine
and report projected water use savings in gallons per capita per day
based on its determination of the highest practicable level of water
conservation and efficiency achievable. RWPGs shall develop conservation
strategies based on this determination. In preparing this evaluation,
RWPGs shall seek the input of WUGs and WWPs as to what is the highest
practicable level of conservation and efficiency achievable, in their
opinion, and take that input into consideration. RWPGs shall develop
water conservation strategies consistent with guidance provided by
the Commission in its administrative rules that implement Texas Water
Code §11.085. When developing water conservation strategies,
the RWPGs must consider potentially applicable best management practices.
Strategy evaluation in accordance with this section shall include
a quantitative description of the quantity, cost, and reliability
of the water estimated to be conserved under the highest practicable
level of water conservation and efficiency achievable.
(D) RWPGs shall consider strategies to address any
issues identified in the information compiled by the Board from the
water loss audits performed by Retail Public Utilities pursuant to §358.6
of this title (relating to Water Loss Audits).
(3) RWPGs shall recommend Gallons Per Capita Per Day
goal(s) for each municipal WUG or specified groupings of municipal
WUGs. Goals must be recommended for each planning decade and may be
a specific goal or a range of values. At a minimum, the RWPs shall
include Gallons Per Capita Per Day goals based on drought conditions
to align with guidance principles in §358.3 of this title (relating
to Guidance Principles).
(j) RWPs shall include a subchapter consolidating the
RWPG's recommendations regarding water conservation. RWPGs shall include
in the RWPs model Water Conservation Plans pursuant to Texas Water