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Lower Rio Grande Water Quality Initiative

Binational efforts to improve water and wastewater infrastructure along the U.S./Mexico border have resulted in marked improvements in water quality in the Rio Grande. However, there are areas where continued efforts are needed. In particular, the portion of the river downstream from the Falcon International Reservoir to the reach where the river enters the Gulf of Mexico has experienced persistently high bacteria levels in-stream.

A binational effort is underway to improve and protect water quality in the Lower Rio Grande/Río Bravo below Falcon Dam to the Gulf of Mexico that currently experiences bacteria levels that have at times been higher than recommended for approved water uses of the river. The effort, the Lower Rio Grande/Rio Bravo Water Quality Initiative (LRGWQI), is intended to serve as a pilot project to develop the binational mechanisms necessary to improve water quality throughout the Rio Grande/Río Bravo.

A goal of this initiative is to identify potential feasible pollution prevention and control options (the options) that will result in the restoration, conservation, and improvement of the water quality in the Lower Rio Grande/Río Bravo through a facilitated stakeholder process that includes the participating agencies, stakeholders from both sides of the river and representatives of the local binational community of water users.


Terms of Reference
Watershed Characterization Report
Mexican GIS Data
LaQual model input file
International Boundary and Water Commission, United States Section
US Environmental Protection Agency
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
Mexican Section, International Boundary and Water Commission (MxIBWC)
National Water Commission (CONAGUA)
Government of the State of Tamaulipas, through the State Water Commission of Tamaulipas (CEAT)
University of Texas, Pan American
University of Texas at Brownsville
Texas A&M Kingsville
University of Texas at Austin