2022 Mining Water Use Study

Purpose

The mining industry in Texas is critical to the state's and the nation's economy, and the availability of adequate water is essential to many mining sectors. Accurate water use estimates and long-range projections associated with this industry are critical to Texas water planning process. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) has granted funding to the TWDB for a study on mining water use and projections through the Water Use and Research Data program (USGS WUDR Program) and the TWDB is contracting with the University of Texas Bureau of Economic Geology (UTBEG) to conduct the study. UTBEG conducted a similar study in 2011-2012 and this new study will serve as an update to the previous study.

This study will provide a comprehensive and quantitative assessment of mining water use across Texas and will identify major mining operations in the state, including oil and gas, aggregates, and coal and lignite. Both historical and current water use will be determined, and projections of future water demand will be developed for 2030-2080 in each major sub-category within the mining sector, highlighting water use for unconventional oil and gas development. The study will also analyze water use patterns, technological changes, market trends, and water source information. An interactive dashboard will be developed by the TWDB and posted to our website at the end of the study. This information will be utilized in the 2026 Regional Water Plans and the 2027 State Water Plan.

TWDB Contract Manager:
Katie Dahlberg
Contractor:
University of Texas Bureau of Economic Geology (UTBEG)
Timeline:
December 2020 through August 2022

Tasks

  1. Quantify current and historical water use for hydraulic fracturing and produced water volumes
  2. Identify the sources of water for hydraulic fracturing
  3. Develop projections of future water demand for oil and gas (2030-2080)
  4. Identify locations of operations and quantify current and projected future water use for coal and lignite mining
  5. Identify locations of operations and quantify current and projected future water use for aggregates
  6. Collaborate with USGS personnel on water use for the mining category
  7. The TWDB will develop an interactive data dashboard, which will display the final water use estimates and demand projections

Milestones

Deliverable Date
Kick-off Meeting December 2020
Progress Report 1 March 2021
Progress Report 2 September 2021
Progress Report 3 March 2022
Draft technical report and data March 2022
Final technical report and data June 2022
Interactive Dashboard June 2022

Progress Reports

  1. Progress Report 2
  2. Progress Report 1

Activities

Kick-off Meeting

The TWDB held a Mining Water Use Study Kick-off Meeting on December 18, 2020 to present the tasks and timeline of the study. The agenda for the meeting included the purpose of the study and a detailed overview of the methodology, plus questions and answers from attendees. The presentation by UTBEG, meeting notes, and meeting recording can be found below.

Technical Workgroup

The TWDB held a technical workgroup meeting on April 22, 2021 to discuss the purpose of the mining water use study and share the projections methodology. More info regarding the progress of this workgroup will be shared at a later date.


If you have any questions or comments about the information provided in these pages please contact Projections and Socioeconomic Analysis Department

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