The population of Texas is expected to double by 2040, generating new stresses on our natural resources including water, land, and air. However, water is the most urgent environmental issue facing Texas in the years ahead, as existing water supplies cannot sustain the state's population growth unless appropriate water resource stewardship is learned and tough conservation measures are enacted. Water and air quality are also issues, as the state ranks first in the amount of toxic chemicals released into these natural resources.
Ninety-five percent of Texas land is privately owned. The remaining five percent is designated for public use of various kinds, including highways, parks, wildlife areas, and other activities. As private land changes hands over generations, it is frequently subdivided into smaller parcels. This fragmentation of privately held land disrupts traditional patterns of wildlife migration and can lead to loss in animal populations.
Texas is a leader in both energy production and consumption. As the state's population and energy demand have risen over the years, so has an interest in sustainable energy. The Foundation's sustainable energy priorities include programs promoting the use of energy-efficient standards and construction techniques, and research and development of new energy-efficient and green builiing technologies.
The Foundation's Strategic Plan for the Environment places a priority on environmental issues focused on 1) water quanity and quality, 2) land and habitat conservation, 3) sustainable energy, and 4) environmental awareness.