The water beneath your feet May 2016

Groundwater is defined as water beneath the surface of the land. Most groundwater is found in aquifers, which are underground layers of rock, sand, and gravel that collect and transfer water. Because groundwater is an important water supply for many Texans, it is critical for Texans to understand this water resource.

Our agency continues to develop new ways to study groundwater, and we've recently updated the Water Data Interactive website with the new Groundwater Data Viewer. This application displays groundwater data sets with enhanced navigation tools for viewing and downloading all our available groundwater data.

The Groundwater Data Viewer allows users to access a number of groundwater-related databases that our agency maintains including the Groundwater Database (GWDB), the Brackish Resources Aquifer Characterization System (BRACS) Database, and the Submitted Drillers Reports (SDR) Database. Users can choose just one of the database sets or a combination depending on the scope.

  • The GWDB collects and stores data to help identify the natural properties of the aquifers and can be used for water planning from a local or regional perspective. This database has information on selected water wells, springs, oil/gas tests, water levels, and water quality.
  • The BRACS Database stores well and geology information to help characterize the brackish groundwater resources of Texas and is compiled from existing water well records, geophysical well logs, and geologic reports.
  • The SDR Database was created in cooperation with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) Water Well Drillers and Pump Installers Program. It contains water well reports submitted to TDLR from February 2001 to present.

The Groundwater Data Viewer allows users to choose from several base maps, including Google imagery and topographic maps, and provides the ability to turn on additional geologic and geographic layers such as major/minor aquifers and groundwater management areas. Data layers can be further sorted and identified through the use of groundwater filters and labels.

The data viewer, along with other resources we offer such as monitoring groundwater levels and quality, conducting groundwater modeling, and maintaining water well records, all help support the study of groundwater and the water planning process. More information about the data viewer and other resources can be found at our website.

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