Lake Granbury Watershed Protection Plan

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Texas Commission on Environmental Quality have approved the Lake Granbury Watershed Protection Plan (WPP), which was created to address concerns about levels of E. coli found in some of the man-made coves at the Lake Granbury.

Problem Statement

Over the last several decades, Hood County has experienced rapid growth. A considerable portion of the development around the lake is located on man-made canals and coves. These coves are shallow, dead-end bodies of water with little mixing or interaction with the main body of the reservoir.

A substantial portion of the developed area around Lake Granbury consists of unincorporated subdivisions that do not have sewage collection systems or centralized sewage treatment facilities. These areas rely on individual on-site septic systems for household waste management. Approximately 9,000 septic systems are located in the immediate vicinity of Lake Granbury.

For the last several years, regular water quality testing on Lake Granbury coves and canals has found elevated concentrations of E. coli bacteria in some areas. These elevated bacteria levels could pose a danger for contact recreational use such as swimming or water skiing. E. coli is a bacteria normally found in the intestines of humans and other warm-blooded animals.

The Lake Granbury Watershed Protection Plan Project development was funded by federal (319) Non-Point Source grant dollars provided to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The TCEQ partnered with the Brazos River Authority to develop a Watershed Protection Plan (WPP). The WPP provides an assessment of the existing and potential water quality threats from elevated bacteria concentrations within the Lake Granbury watershed and develops a strategy to improve and protect water quality within Lake Granbury. Information obtained from this project will provide federal, state and local decision-makers with a variety of mechanisms that can be employed to promote the orderly restoration of the lakes aquatic environment and to prevent additional degradation.

Stakeholder Advisory Group

A Stakeholder Advisory Group was created to establish project communication among local stakeholders. Specific tasks that are undertaken by the stakeholders group include: identification of areas with the greatest concerns; making recommendations for additional monitoring; and making recommendations on management measures to improve water quality. Stakeholder meetings were held on a recurring basis to enhance and support participation of stakeholders (including the general public and other interested parties), enhance public understanding of the project, and encourage early and continued participation in selecting, designing, and implementing management measures.