Aquifer Storage and Recovery
Aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) is the storage of water in a suitable aquifer through a well during times when water is available, and the recovery of water from the same aquifer during times when it is needed (Texas Water Code §27.151). Aquifer recharge(AR), sometimes called managed aquifer recharge (MAR), is the intentional recharge of an aquifer by means of injection well or other means of infiltration (Texas Water Code §27.201). Allocation of surface water for ASR was authorized by the 74th Texas Legislature with House Bill 1989. In 2015, the 84th Texas Legislature passed House Bill 655 that amended the statute to make the permitting process more conducive to implementing ASR projects.
In 2019, the 86th Texas Legislature passed House Bill 721 that directs the TWDB to conduct a statewide survey of various major and minor aquifers to identify the relative suitability of aquifers for use in ASR projects and aquifer recharge projects based on several considerations and submit a report that summarizes the statewide survey to the governor, lieutenant governor, and House speaker by December 15, 2020 (Texas Water Code §11.155). In addition, the TWDB is directed to (1) conduct studies of aquifer storage and recovery projects or aquifer recharge projects in the state water plan or identified by interested persons, (2) work with appropriate interested persons to conduct studies, and (3) share the results of studies with regional water planning groups and interested parties. House Bill 720 also passed by the 86th Texas Legislature allows unappropriated water, including stormwater and floodwater, to be appropriated for aquifer recharge projects and ASR projects (Texas Water Code §11.023, 11.157, and 11.158).
Goals of Aquifer Storage and Recovery Program:
- Disseminate information through public education
- Consolidate and map all available study materials
- Facilitate the application of best practices among entities considering aquifer storage and recovery
- Managed Aquifer Recharge: Unleashing Resiliency, Protecting Groundwater Quality, National Groundwater Association, April 24-25, 2023, San Antonio, TX
- Texas Groundwater Summit, Texas Alliance of Groundwater Districts, August 29-31, 2023, San Antonio, TX
- International Symposium on Managed Aquifer Recharge, International Association of Hydrogeologists, April 28, 2025, Cape Town, South Africa
Recent TWDB Reports and Data