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The Proposed Lake Ringgold Is Not Needed

Updated: Oct 12, 2023

If Ringgold is built, the people of Wichita Falls and its customer cities will pay hundreds of millions of dollars to build something they simply don’t need.

In this picture: Texas native tall grass prairie land that would be flooded - one of the rarest natural ecosystems in the United States - if Lake Ringgold were to be built.
Much of the land that would be flooded is native prairie -- one of the rarest natural ecosystems in the US.

During the 2011-2015 drought, the City of Wichita Falls received international recognition for developing a water reuse/recycling program that will ensure Wichita Falls and its customer cities have an abundant supply of water for the decades to come.

Despite having more than enough water to meet its current and future needs, Wichita Falls is planning to build a reservoir in Clay County called Lake Ringgold.

There are a number of reasons why Lake Ringgold is a bad idea:

HIGH COST: Lake Ringgold has a price tag of $442 million [Cost Estimate]. Once the interest and operating costs are added, residents of Wichita Falls and its customer cities will pay over a billion dollars for the project.

NO PUBLIC VOTE: The City would likely borrow the money for Lake Ringgold from the State of Texas [SWIFT Fund] so there would be no need for a bond election. The people would have no opportunity to vote on the lake – they’ll just get to pay for it.

IMPACTS ON RANCHING: Lake Ringgold would inundate 16,000 acres of productive ranch land and take more than 40,000 acres off county tax rolls. The City already owns 6,662 acres of the land, but more than forty ranching families would be forced to sell all or part of their land for the remainder. [See Pages 5-42 to 5-45 of the Region B State Water Plan].

IMPACTS ON WILDLIFE: The environmental impacts would be enormous. Thousands of acres of bottomland and rare tallgrass prairie would be inundated, lands that currently support deer, quail, turkey, and other wildlife. More than 1,000 acres of never-plowed tallgrass prairie would be lost. Native tallgrass prairie is one of the most endangered ecosystems in the country, with only about 1% of the original prairie remaining.

The Lake Ringgold project is moving forward.

YOU can help put the brakes on this wasteful project.

If you live in Wichita Falls, urge your city council member to withdraw pursuit of the Lake Ringgold project. If you know anyone who lives in Wichita Falls, ask them to contact their city council member.

For more information, click here or contact Texas Conservation Alliance at


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