TPWD’s Wildlife Diversity Program accepting grant proposals for conservation related grants

TPWD’s Wildlife Diversity Program accepting grant proposals for conservation related grants

  • August 31, 2016
  • News

TPWD’s Wildlife Diversity Program is accepting proposals for grants ranging from $2,500-$30,000 for coalition building, conservation education, nature engagement, citizen science data mining, and SGCN research. 2-page applications are due by 5:00 pm on September 30, 2016. Grants are funded by the TPWD Horned Lizard, Hummingbird, and Rattlesnake Conservation License Plates. When a driver chooses to buy a specialty Conservation License Plate, $22 of each purchase goes directly to fund wildlife projects. In the past, projects have emphasized wildlife-related community…

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Court voids heart of Texas Highway Beautification Act

Court voids heart of Texas Highway Beautification Act

A state appeals court has overturned a law that allowed Texas officials to regulate signs along highways and interstates, saying key sections of the 1972 Texas Highway Beautification Act violate free speech rights. Limits on outdoor advertising, the legacy of efforts by Lady Bird Johnson to reduce eyesores along the nation’s growing highway system, cannot be enforced because the law improperly regulates billboards and signs based on what they say, the Austin-based 3rd Court of Appeals ruled. Signs, for example,…

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NOAA launches America’s first national water forecast model

NOAA launches America’s first national water forecast model

  • August 24, 2016
  • News

NOAA and its partners have developed a new forecasting tool to simulate how water moves throughout the nation’s rivers and streams, paving the way for the biggest improvement in flood forecasting the country has ever seen. Launched August 16th and run on NOAA’s powerful new Cray XC40 supercomputer, the National Water Model uses data from more than 8,000 U.S. Geological Survey gauges to simulate conditions for 2.7 million locations in the contiguous United States. The model generates hourly forecasts for…

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Colorado towns work to preserve a diminishing resources: darkness

Colorado towns work to preserve a diminishing resources: darkness

  • August 22, 2016
  • News

Four out of five Americans live in places where they can no longer see the Milky Way. But here, the tiny neighboring ranching and railroad towns of Westcliffe (population 568) and Silver Cliff (population 587) have decided to tap into the dwindling natural resource of darkness. The old silver mines that once made Silver Cliff Colorado’s third-largest town are long closed, and many ranchers are retiring. But there is still the night. So for more than a decade, the two…

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TPWD Proposes New CWD Zones; Public Is Invited To Comment

TPWD Proposes New CWD Zones; Public Is Invited To Comment

  • August 19, 2016
  • News

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is seeking public comment on proposed rules establishing chronic wasting disease (CWD) zones and restricting movement of live deer authorized under TPWD permits to or from properties within those zones. The proposed rules would also restrict movement of specific deer carcass parts from some CWD zones as well as importation of carcass parts into Texas from states where the disease has been detected. The proposed rules are designed and intended to provide reasonable…

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Council Reviews ‘Rough Draft’ Priorities for $850 Million Bond

Council Reviews ‘Rough Draft’ Priorities for $850 Million Bond

  • August 10, 2016
  • News

Wednesday marked one of many more steps in a lengthy and at times complicated process that reignites a deceptively simple, yet age-old question: How should we divvy up our money? City of San Antonio staff revealed preliminary 2017 Municipal Bond project estimates and spending priorities to City Council that would direct more than half (54%) of the historic $850 million bond to street, bridge, and sidewalk projects throughout San Antonio while dividing up the rest between investments in drainage and flood control (17%),…

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Lone Star rail on life support after CAMPO vote

Lone Star rail on life support after CAMPO vote

  • August 9, 2016
  • News

The Lone Star rail project, after one last Hail Mary with Union Pacific, is approaching the end of the line. And after state and federal regulators cross and dot a few t’s and i’s, it is likely that the Lone Star Rail District, which has been attempting for 13 years to build such a line, will shortly cease to exist. The idea of building a passenger line in the Austin-San Antonio corridor, however, could resurface in a form to be…

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GEAA: Night sky and impervious cover protections removed from SA Tomorrow Plan

Dear GEAA members and friends, Last week the San Antonio Planning Commission voted 5-4 to exclude recommendations for impervious cover limits and dark skies protections from the proposed Sustainability Plan.  Read more here. As a stakeholder participant who participated in a year’s worth of meetings, I am outraged that five members of the Planning Commission would favor a request from the Real Estate Council of San Antonio over the recommendations of an inclusive panel of stakeholders. (Please note that this…

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San Antonio City Council urged to restore natural resource provisions into SA Tomorrow Plan

San Antonio City Council urged to restore natural resource provisions into SA Tomorrow Plan

  • August 3, 2016
  • News

Last week, the San Antonio Planning Commission removed two important provisions from the SA Tomorrow Plan, one for impervious cover and one for night sky protection.  The SA Tomorrow Plan, more than a year in the making, will be the city’s prevailing document setting a tone for development and natural resource protection in San Antonio for years to come. August 3, 2016 Hill Country Alliance Hill Country Alliance Community, Last week, the San Antonio Planning Commission removed two important provisions…

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What Happens to the U.S. Midwest When the Water’s Gone?

What Happens to the U.S. Midwest When the Water’s Gone?

  • August 1, 2016
  • News

“For the past 60 years, the Ogallala has been pumped out faster than raindrops and snowmelt can seep back into the ground to replenish it, thanks largely to irrigation machinery like the one sleeping nearby. As a result, in parts of western Kansas, the aquifer has declined by more than 60 percent during that period. In some parts, it is already exhausted. The decline is steady now, dry years or wet. In 2015 rain was exceptionally heavy—50 to 100 percent…

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