Reddish Egret | Credit: Brian Lasenby  
  • Texas Gulf Coast Water Flows Initiative

    The bays and estuaries of Texas provide irreplaceable habitat for a huge variety of fish and wildlife and have tremendous economic value for the state. The ecological health of these coastal systems depends, to a large degree, on adequate freshwater inflows from contributing streams and rivers. As the population of Texas grows and upstream water demands increase, these systems are increasingly at risk.

    The Texas Gulf Coast Water Flows program works to increase freshwater flows to improve the ecological health of Texas bays and estuaries. A strategic action plan for a locally-based collaborative water transactions program will draw upon models from other western geographies and the experience of NFWF’s Western Water Program and its partners. This action plan is being developed by the Texas Environmental Flows Working Group, a coalition of Texas-based non-governmental conservation organizations and university researchers with decades of experience on these issues.

    The first year of the program will focus on a range of scientific, technical and economic analyses necessary for successful development of a voluntary water transactions market along the Texas Gulf Coast and in upstream tributaries. These investigations will support the program’s overarching goal of completing at least one and hopefully several critical “proof of concept” transactions over a 2-3 three year period as the foundation for future market-based flow transactions at scale.

    Priority geographies for this effort include the following:

    • Tres Palacios and Carancahua Bays, which are fed by numerous coastal tributaries and help to sustain Matagorda Bay along with flows from the Lower Colorado River;
    • Trinity Bay, which feeds into Galveston Bay at the mouth of the Trinity River; and
    • San Antonio Bay at the downstream end of the San Antonio and Guadalupe Rivers.

 Application Information


 Program Information

  • (Updated: 11/21/2019)


 Staff Representatives






 Due Dates