Colorado and Lavaca Rivers, Matagorda and Lavaca Bays Consensus Recommendations

August 30, 2011 The Colorado and Lavaca Bay and Basin Area Stakeholder Committee (CL BBASC) submitted its consensus recommendations report to the Environmental Flows Advisory Group (EFAG) and Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) on August 30, 2011 (click here for a PDF copy of the report). The report, which was based on a twelve month review of scientific studies on the rivers and bays by an expert science team, recommends that several key environmental flow components be established to protect the sound ecological environment that currently exists in these rivers and bays. The TCEQ has 12 months to review the recommendations and implement environmental flow standards into the Texas Water Code. The report is the first and only consensus report that has been submitted since the process began in 2008. Three other stakeholder committees and their expert science teams have been split regarding how to protect the environmental flows of their respective basins and bays, while also providing water for human needs. The consensus report is an important milestone in the environmental flows allocation process, and should provide a strong basis for protection the Colorado and Lavaca rivers, and Matagorda and Lavaca bays.


After many years of discussion and negotiations, the Environmental Flows Allocation Process was established for the State of Texas on the last day of the 2007 legislative session. The Texas Environmental Flows Advisory Group was created by the 80th Texas Legislature in recognition of the importance that the ecological soundness of our riverine, bay, and estuary systems and riparian lands have on the economy, health, and well being of Texas. For detailed information on the Environmental Flows Process click here to visit Texas Water Matters website.

The Environmental Flows Advisory Group (EFAG) is composed of the following nine members:

Senator Kip Averitt, Co-presiding Officer
Representative Allan Ritter, Co-presiding Officer
Senator Glenn Hegar, Jr.
Senator Joan Huffman
Representative Jodie Laubenberg
Representative Doug Miller
Mr. Joe M. Crutcher, Texas Water Development Board
Commissioner Karen Hixon, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Commissioner Bryan Shaw, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality

The Colorado and Lavaca Rivers and Matagorda and Lavaca Bays Basin and Bay Area Stakeholder Committee is composed of a diverse group of interest groups including:

L. G. Raun – Agriculture irrigation
Frank Lewis & Clarence Schomberg – Free-range livestock
Bruce Arendale & Rick Kresta – Recreational water users
Teresa Lutes – Municipalities
Robert “Bob” Shoemate – Soil and water conservation districts
Deedy Hufffman – Industry: refining
David Hill – Industry: chemical manufacturing
Joe King – Industry: electric generation
Buddy Treybig – Commercial fishermen
Bob Pickens & James Dailey – Public interest groups
Haskell Simon and Richard Ottis – Regional water planning groups
Ronald Gertson & Caroline Runge – Groundwater conservation districts
Patric Brzozowske & Suzanne Zarling – River authorities
Andrew Sansom & Myron Hess – Environmental interests

Related Groups:

Texas Environmental Flows Science Advisory Committee
Sabine and Neches Rivers and Sabine Lake Bay Basin and Bay Area Stakeholders Committee
Trinity and San Jacinto Rivers and Galveston Bay Stakeholders Committee
Guadalupe, San Antonio, Mission, and Aransas Rivers and Mission, Copano, Aransas, and San Antonio Bays Stakeholders Committee