Still Time to Support the Texas Night Sky Festival

Still Time to Support the Texas Night Sky Festival

  • January 15, 2016
  • News

Celebrate the Night Sky on Saturday, March 5th at the free, family-friendly Texas Night Sky Festival to be held at Dripping Springs Ranch Park. It is not too late to show your support! Sponsors have until February 5th to be included in the event publicity. The Hill Country Alliance is a sponsor. Won’t you be one too? With something for everyone, the Festival will kick off at 3 pm with fun activities, a display of selected entries in the event’s photo…

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Reminder to Blanco River landowners: Workshop this Saturday, January 23rd

Reminder to Blanco River landowners: Workshop this Saturday, January 23rd

  • January 15, 2016
  • News

Organizations, agencies and experts in river health are partnering on a workshop to share resources with landowners who may have been impacted by the Memorial Day flood of 2015. This session will share some important notes about recovery of the river and river banks, and will provide a preview to a session planned for later in the spring. Please click here for more details, and forward to anyone who may benefit from this workshop. As always, visit Letting the River…

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Grassroots success in Spicewood

Grassroots success in Spicewood

“Concerns raised by a group of nearby residents involve dust controls, entryways for trucks on Texas 71, potential runoff of chemicals or other materials into a nearby creek,” said Michael Moore, founder of Save Our Spicewood. “Spicewood-area residents have approached county officials about their concerns; however, the local entity has no regulatory authority in commercial and industrial operations.” Appeal halts work on Spicewood asphalt plant The Lower Colorado River Authority has issued a second stop-work order in four months for…

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Austin city leaders urged to fast-track ‘high-capacity’ transit plan

Austin city leaders urged to fast-track ‘high-capacity’ transit plan

  • January 14, 2016
  • News

Looking to “jumpstart” discussion on the future of Austin’s transit system, the Urban Transportation Commission has asked city leaders to explore “high capacity” transit proposals that could be put before voters in November. In its Jan. 12 meeting, the commission voted 8-1 to recommend that Austin City Council direct city staff to develop and present a high-capacity transit plan, including the consideration of rail, early enough that it could end up on the 2016 ballot. Commissioner Chris Hosek voted against…

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Clash of land-use priorities troubling

Clash of land-use priorities troubling

The Lower Colorado River Authority has proposed to construct a large electrical transmission line across the largest piece of protected land — public or private — in Gillespie County, southwest of Austin. Owned by Terese T. Hershey, a renowned conservationist, the 1,500-acre Hershey Ranch is protected by a conservation easement that was supposed to conserve it in perpetuity. The Hill Country Land Trust, one of 30 private, nonprofit land trusts in Texas, “holds” the conservation easement and is entrusted with ensuring…

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Advocates Petition EPA to Strip Texas of Some Environmental Responsibilities

Advocates Petition EPA to Strip Texas of Some Environmental Responsibilities

  • January 13, 2016
  • News

Petition says Texas programs no longer meet fundamental federal air and water safeguards, can’t protect the public.  Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and Caddo Lake Institute (CLI) are asking America’s environmental protection agency to strip Texas of some of the responsibilities that it had previously delegated to the state under the nation’s Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act. The groups filed a petition  with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) last night asking the federal agency to “review and withdraw its…

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The Blanco River Flood: The Healing Has Begun

The Blanco River Flood: The Healing Has Begun

In this TWA Magazine article, retired NRCS biologist Steve Nelle explores the history of major floods in the Hill Country and what lessens we should take away from the Memorial Day 2015 flooding of the Blanco River. One of Nelle’s most important messages? “A healthy functional river system depends on periodic floods of all sizes to maintain and perpetuate itself. Flooding is not something bad that happens to a river; it is a necessary part of the river.” Find out…

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Warbler Science Matters

Warbler Science Matters

  • January 11, 2016
  • News

“The golden-cheeked warbler already has an uncertain future as more and more land is developed in the Hill Country,” said Joan Marshall, director of Texas Audubon. “That’s why the science is so important — to base listing decisions on the best science available. That’s what’s frustrating about Texas A&M’s suppression of the O’Donnell article.” Read the Austin American Statesman investigative report.  View a timeline of how this issue has unfolded here. HCA is one of many sponsors of the Bio…

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An exploration of the long-term viability of the Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer

An exploration of the long-term viability of the Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer

The first 2016 Texas Water Symposium will be held February 11th at 7 p.m. at Texas State University. Dr. Robert Mace of Texas Water Development Board will moderate a panel of hydro-geologists to take close look at the health and sustainability of the Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer. In light of the many water supply projects proposed for the Carrizo aquifer, including the San Antonio Water System/Vista Ridge Pipeline Project, this program will help us understand whether the aquifer recharges at a rate…

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Public participation encouraged in groundwater management process

Public participation encouraged in groundwater management process

Every five years the general public has the opportunity to weigh in on the Desired Future Condition (DFC) of our aquifers. Regional Groundwater Management Areas (GMAs) are in the process of determining management goals for Hill Country aquifers. Currently the Trinity Aquifer is being managed towards an average thirty-foot level drop over the next 50-years. HCA is one of many groups that will submit public comments asking that our Hill Country aquifers be managed in such a way that springs…

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