Environmental Sustainability

As part of our overall mission of conservation and education, the Texas State Aquarium formally launched its “Going Green” program in 2009. While many of the activities that we are engaged in have been ongoing for years, this year marks a formalization of the program. Our “Going Green” program is led by our operations team, but involves members from virtually every department within the organization.
Energy Conservation
  • Installation of automatic light switches in a number of areas to eliminate lights being left on for extended periods of time.
  • Extensive use of compact fluorescent light fixtures through the facility helps conserve electricity, and a transition towards LED lighting will further reduce energy use.
  • New programmable thermostats have been installed in office spaces so that areas can be cooled more efficiently and only when needed.
  • Purchased an electric golf cart to replace a gasoline powered truck for parking and security operations, and have installed photo voltaic cells on the carts for recharging.
  • Installation of timers on vending machines that previously ran 24 hours per day.
  • Purchased and installed a solar array with a grant from Green Mountain Energy.

Water Conservation

  • Automatic faucets and waterless urinals have been installed in all high use public restrooms to reduce water use.
  • Implementation of a new cleaning and filtration system on waterfall basins, which has eliminated the need for weekly dumping and refilling.


  • TSA staff has long recycled paper, cardboard, and plastic.
  • New recycling containers have been installed in public locations to encourage guests to recycle whenever possible.
  • A new recycling container specifically designed for guest’s maps and program schedules has been installed near the Aquarium’s exit.

Restaurant Operations

  • Offering reusable trays rather than non-reusable plastic bags for meals in the food court.
  • Switched to offering our guests biodegradable paper straws, which are also not harmful to our animal collection or local wildlife.
  • Switched to using biodegradable bamboo plates at our annual fundraising gala.

Education and Public Outreach

  • Developed a new “eco tip” newsletter that is emailed to all staff.
  • Dramatically reduced the amount of bottled water purchased, and installed new on-site tap water purification systems to replace bottled water.


  • Several of our larger landscaping beds have been converted to xeriscape beds, using drought-tolerant plant species and crushed granite material instead of plant-based mulch.

We partner with the following conservation-minded organizations:

For more information on the Aquarium Green Team, or how you can contribute to our conservation efforts, email nandrade@txstateaq.org