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When there’s not enough for all, who gets water from the Colorado River?

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

Since 2007, Texas has been experiencing one of the worst droughts in history. In the Colorado River basin, Central Texans are sweltering under more triple-digit-temperature days, and rice farmers downstream have now experienced a third consecutive year without water to irrigate their crops. No flooded rice fields means more than just no crops for farmers it means no waterfowl hunting on those usually plentiful migratory stopovers.

The ongoing drought has created real conflicts among water users. Cities need water for their municipal water uses and economic security. Farmers, ranchers and commercial fishermen need water to produce food and fiber. Industry and other businesses need water to remain economically competitive and provide jobs. Waterfowl need water for the wetlands they use as stopover sites when migrating. Fish and other marine creatures need water from rivers to refresh the bays.

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