Demographic Variations in Texas
The Diversity of Texas
The borders of Texas encompass an area whose size and diversity are those of a nation. As an independent country, Texas would be among the 50 largest in the world by population, the 40 largest by land area, and in the top 15 by gross domestic product.
Four primary topological regions meet in Texas, with each extending far beyond the state's borders: the Gulf Coastal Plain, the Interior Lowlands, the High Plains and the Basin and Range region. The Gulf Coastal Plain extends from the line of the Balcones Escarpment near San Antonio and Austin to the Atlantic Coast of the US. The Interior Lowlands extend westward from the Coastal Plain to the Caprock and the High Plains to the West and past the Canadian border to the North. The High Plains likewise encompass the area between the Caprock Escarpment on the East and the Rocky Mountains on the West, and like the Interior Lowlands extend northward far beyond the Texas border. Finally, the Basin and Range area encompasses the area of the Big Bend and El Paso, and extends westward and Northward into New Mexico.
The population of Texas has no racial and ethnic majority. Non-Hispanic Whites were 44 percent of the state's population at the most recent estimates in 2013, and Hispanics were just over 38 percent. The Hispanic share is growing by about one percent every year, and is expected to overtake the non-Hispanic White share before the 2020 census. Asian and Pacific Islander populations are also growing quickly, and are now nearly 5 percent of the state's population.
The racial and ethnic populations of Texas live in different parts of the state. Non-Hispanic Whites live throughout the state, but are over-represented in both East Texas and the Panhandle and West Texas, and are under-represented in the border region. African Americans are especially concentrated in East Texas and in several of the state's largest metropolitan areas, especially Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin. Hispanics are an especially large population share in the border region and in San Antonio, but are also well-represented in the Houston and Dallas areas. Asian and Pacific Islander population is especially concentrated in Harris (Houston), Dallas and Travis (Austin) counties and some nearby suburban counties.
Race and Ethnicity by County
Source: U.S. Bureau of the Census. Population Estimates Branch. Vintage 2013 population estimates.