Clayton Wolf named TPWD Chief Operating Officer

Clayton Wolf named TPWD Chief Operating Officer

Clayton Wolf, a 27-year veteran of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD), has been named Chief Operating Officer (COO). Wolf, previously the Wildlife Division Director, joined TPWD as a wildlife biologist in 1993. “What attracted me to this position is the appreciation that I have for all of my TPWD colleagues and the critically important work they do on a daily basis to conserve the natural resources of Texas.  I’ve had an appreciation for the wild things and wild places…

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Win for Texas landowner in pipeline condemnation appeal

Win for Texas landowner in pipeline condemnation appeal

Recently, the First District Court of Appeals in Houston sided with a landowner who challenged the eminent domain authority of a pipeline company seeking to condemn property.  The case is important for landowners and helps to further flesh out the facts that a pipeline company must be able to show in order to be a “common carrier” and illustrates some considerations in proving fair market value.  [Read full opinion here.] The Hlavinkas own 15,000-16,000 acres of land in Brazoria County,…

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Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District emergency information for well owners

Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District emergency information for well owners

Press Release: Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District – For Immediate Release: July 10, 2020 Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District well owners, The Kinder Morgan Pipeline Company is constructing a large natural gas pipeline from west to east through central Hays County that will convey 2 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day from the Permian Basin to the Houston area. The pipeline will pass directly over terrain that is highly porous and vulnerable to surface contamination. District geologists have…

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Catch some falling stars with Comal County Friends of the Night Sky

Catch some falling stars with Comal County Friends of the Night Sky

With Comal County in the crosshairs of rapid growth along the I-35 corridor between Austin and San Antonio, Wells and other Canyon Lake residents have joined forces with a grassroots movement sweeping Central Texas whose goal is stopping “light pollution” before it erases stars from the night sky… With the help of HCA, Comal County’s night skies movement kicked off in December 2018 after Commissioners Court passed a Night Sky resolution encouraging residents, businesses and developers to start paying attention…

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Grim day for pipelines shows they’re almost impossible to build

Grim day for pipelines shows they’re almost impossible to build

To be an energy superpower, U.S. oil and natural gas requires a suitably gargantuan pipeline network that stretches for millions of miles. The country’s ability to expand that infrastructure is being tested like never before. In the span of less than 24 hours, a court ordered the Dakota Access crude oil pipeline to shut down and the developers of the Atlantic Coast gas conduit said they were canceling the project. It was a deluge of bad news for an industry…

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Parks advocates push $750M bond proposal to add sidewalks, trails throughout city

Parks advocates push $750M bond proposal to add sidewalks, trails throughout city

Parks and transportation advocates hope to put a $750 million bond proposal on the November ballot that would fund many construction projects centered around “active transportation” found in the Austin Strategic Mobility Plan… “For the bike plan, sidewalk plan and trail plan, Vision Zero and everything else to be funded, that would be more than $100 million per year for the next six years injected into our economy going to primarily local contractors,” he said. “We see it as a…

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Report: Houston’s water conservation efforts lag other Texas cities

Report: Houston’s water conservation efforts lag other Texas cities

Jennifer Walker, Deputy Director of Texas Water Programs at the National Wildlife Federation, said Houston fared worse in the report because of an increase in water loss in its distribution system. Water loss rose from 11% four years ago to 17% in its most recent water audit. “It’s one of those things that’s kind of out of sight, out of mind. The distribution system is underground, a lot of the water loss we don’t see except for those big water main…

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Swiss Lodge Gets HOT Fixtures

Swiss Lodge Gets HOT Fixtures

Press Release: Blanco County Friends of the Night Sky – For Immediate Release: June 29, 2020 On June 29, Blanco’s Swiss Lodge motel became the first recipient of night sky friendly outdoor lighting fixtures paid for with Hotel Occupancy Tax (HOT) funds.  The 29 fixtures purchased for the motel were Ellicott Portfolio galvanized, gooseneck wall lanterns, approved as “Good Neighbor Lighting” by the International Dark Sky Association. Thanks to a lot of hard work done in the last legislative session, Blanco, Johnson…

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A pipeline poisons the wells in Hill Country

A pipeline poisons the wells in Hill Country

From the moment Kinder Morgan and its business partners announced that their 430-mile Permian Highway Pipeline would cross the Texas Hill Country, landowners, environmentalists, elected officials and groundwater protection agencies along or near the route have fought tooth and nail to move it or stop it. And they openly warned of the precise danger landowners such as Albright now face: disturbing the “karst” features below their property. Like underground Swiss cheese, they serve as conduits for groundwater that, in a…

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Great Springs Project envisions a network of trails from Austin to San Antonio

Great Springs Project envisions a network of trails from Austin to San Antonio

Twenty-seven years ago, Deborah Morin watched as the hills, streams, caves, and springs of the Hill Country outside of Austin were being gobbled up by construction… Almost three decades later, Morin, a San Antonio native, is at the head of a nonprofit working to do just that, but on a much larger scale. She’s president of the board of the Great Springs Project, an initiative to preserve land and stitch together a network of hike and bike trails that will…

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