Tomball, Deer Park, La Porte, Fulshear among Houston-area cities asking residents to conserve water

Chaz Miller Image
Thursday, August 10, 2023
More Houston-area cities ask residents to conserve water usage
EMBED <>More Videos

Several Houston-area cities, including Tomball, have asked their residents to conserve water amid increased demand and lack of rainfall.

TOMBALL, Texas (KTRK) -- The City of Tomball is mandating residents conserve water amid increased demand, which means there are certain days and times when people can water their yard, wash their cars, or fill their swimming pools.

This is required conservation, but there are other cities in our viewing area that are asking for similar measures as we get through the summer.

ABC13 reached out to city managers at Fulshear, Deer Park, Rosenberg, La Porte, and Katy because each of those cities has requests for residents to conserve water.

RELATED: Rosenberg residents asked to pull back on water usage starting Thursday

Deer Park, La Porte, Rosenberg and Fulshear responded to our request, and Deer Park said it doesn't have data on whether or not it's working because they only made the request about 48 hours ago.

La Porte officials told us they've been doing it for two weeks and that it's brought their city's average usage to non-emergency status.

That being said, they're going to stick with the call for voluntary conservation until there is significant rainfall or a sustained reduction of water usage.

The City of Houston said it's monitoring water usage and that its request comes as a result of demand and leaking pipes across the city.

The City of Fulshear sent statistics showing its water demand has more than doubled since April and that they've noticed a difference in usage since the request for conservation was issued on July 24.

Rosenberg officials say the decrease in water demand has been minimal since they asked for conservation on July 27.

RELATED: Stage 2 water limits in effect in Katy amid extreme heat conditions

Finally, Galveston mandated a voluntary conservation Wednesday, so no data is available from its efforts at the time.

Colin McDonald is with the Texas Water Foundation, which is a non-profit dealing with the future of water in the state.

He said voluntary conservation only works if residents participate, and that requires some sacrifice.

"What you're ultimately talking about is changing people's behaviors and their values," he said. "The biggest driver of summertime water use is outside irrigation, so what you're asking people to do is to reevaluate the value of having a green lawn."

McDonald added that Houston hasn't needed to conserve like San Antonio or El Paso in the past, which means buy-in from residents here will be more challenging.

"Houston has not had to deal with these issues for the basic reason it's at the end of the Trinity River, so it has all the water coming out of Dallas and Fort Worth," McDonald said. "It's only been recently that the quantity of the water has become an issue, and that's the rub."

For news updates, follow Chaz Miller on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.