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AGUA (Aquifer Guardians in Urban Areas) is a coalition of concerned individuals and citizen groups working to protect the Edwards Aquifer. Our goals are to strengthen the regulations designed to protect the aquifer, ensure enforcement of existing laws, alert the public to impending threats, and mobilize public support for aquifer protection efforts.

Active from 1993 through 1997, AGUA was a coalition of 32 member groups and local neighborhood associations, including Bexar Audubon Society, San Antonio Conservation Society, Citizens Organized for Public Service (COPS)/Metro Alliance, Alamo Group of the Sierra Club, Southside Chamber of Commerce, League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF), Citizens' Action, Clean Water Action, San Antonio Area League of Women Voters, San Antonio Coalition of Neighborhood Associations, and Northside Neighborhoods for Organized Development (NNOD). The coalition achieved many of its goals, the chief of which was the passage of a comprehensive set of water quality ordinances. AGUA disbanded in the summer of 1997, though its members continued to work together on a variety of issues concerning aquifer protection.

In 2003, the working group that now comprises the AGUA board received a grant for research and community outreach from Cynthia and George P. Mitchell through the Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance. AGUA has since been recognized as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. We are once more building a strong and effective membership of groups and individuals to advocate for protection of Bexar County’s most precious water resource.

AGUA works with several organizations, both local and regional, for the protection of the Edwards Aquifer and its contributing watersheds within Bexar County. AGUA is a member of the Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance, a coalition of groups from throughout the entire Edwards region organized to influence policy at the State level.

AGUA conducts research used to shape public policy regarding land use in Bexar County. AGUA employs paid staff and volunteers in research, educational and outreach activities designed to promote Aquifer protection policies and create a cadre of “Aquifer Guardians” ready to take action on behalf of the Edwards Aquifer and all who rely on the purity of this water supply.