Southwestern Travis County Groundwater Conservation District cancels confirmation and board elections, citing funding concerns

Southwestern Travis County Groundwater Conservation District cancels confirmation and board elections, citing funding concerns

After a month and a half of planning and securing election funding on Tuesday from Travis County Commissioner’s Court,the temporary board for the Southwestern Travis County Groundwater Conservation District unexpectedly voted in a unanimous decision Friday afternoon to cancel the district’s confirmation and board elections. “The county offered to give us a loan for the election but we had no idea what the loan terms were, and really don’t have the data to be able to know when we would be…

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How an endangered salamander forced a Texan city to save water

How an endangered salamander forced a Texan city to save water

  • March 7, 2018
  • News

When it comes to water, San Antonio may be the world’s most forward-thinking city. But it learned to conserve a precious resource the hard way – and from an unlikely teacher This weekend in San Antonio, a new park is opening in one of the poorer neighborhoods just south of downtown, at a spot where two spring-fed rivers meet. The $13m, three-acre Confluence Park has huge concrete flower petals that will gather rainwater for reuse, and will house educational facilities…

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Community members protest permit for proposed Vulcan Quarry

Community members protest permit for proposed Vulcan Quarry

  • March 7, 2018
  • News

Annalisa Peace | Greater Edwards Aquifer Authority | Around 500 Comal County citizens recently attended a TCEQ meeting at the New Braunfels Civic Center to protest a permit for a new Vulcan Quarry proposed for the intersection of FM 3009 and Hwy 46. Vulcan Materials Company applied for the permit in 2017, sparking a wave of protests by Comal County homeowners who fear the operation will negatively affect their quality of life, impact air and water quality, and damage the…

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Dripping Springs dumping permit battle could be headed to state court

Dripping Springs dumping permit battle could be headed to state court

  • March 7, 2018
  • News

Two and a half years into a protracted battle between the city of Austin, environmental groups and the city of Dripping Springs over whether the Hays County city should be allowed to dump treated sewage into Onion Creek, a state commission will likely decide Wednesday whether to send the matter to an administrative law judge. The issue first arose in 2015 when Dripping Springs, the rapidly growing Hays County city, requested the permit to expand its sewage plant and allow it to…

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Young Pioneers set their sights on protecting the night skies

Young Pioneers set their sights on protecting the night skies

  • February 28, 2018
  • News

Recently the High School special projects group called the Young Pioneers has added a new direction to their program to support and educate the public regarding some other stars in Mason. In addition to their rainwater catchment project, they have begun to look at ways they can have a positive impact on the preservation of our local dark skies and the night time enjoyment of all of the stars that we can see here in Mason County. On Monday morning…

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State permit sought for second concrete plant on Texas 46 east of Boerne

State permit sought for second concrete plant on Texas 46 east of Boerne

  • February 26, 2018
  • News

A concrete batch plant proposed on Texas 46 by Vulcan Materials has sparked intense opposition, including from Kendall County, but a similar project taking shape just down the highway has garnered comparatively little attention. Corvara West LLC applied last July for a Texas Commission on Environmental Quality permit to mix and load concrete at 236 E. Texas 46, a 20-acre site just east of Boerne and a few miles west of the Vulcan site. TCEQ received only three comments on…

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What can Nebraska teach the American West about managing water? A lot.

What can Nebraska teach the American West about managing water? A lot.

Nebraska is one of the top producers of corn, soybeans and hogs in the country. With 91 percent of the state’s total land area dedicated to agricultural production, a lot of water is needed to support all of Nebraska’s farms and ranches. Fortunately, the state sits atop one of the largest underground aquifers in the world. The High Plains Aquifer, commonly referred to as the Ogallala Aquifer, underlies parts of eight states from Texas to South Dakota, and is a…

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Cape Town Pushes Back ‘Day Zero’ as Residents Conserve Water

Cape Town Pushes Back ‘Day Zero’ as Residents Conserve Water

Cape Town residents have drastically lowered their water use, allowing their drought-plagued city to push back the dreaded “Day Zero,” when the system is expected to run dry, by more than 10 weeks. Just three weeks ago, officials were predicting that Cape Town would reach Day Zero — a first for a major city in modern times — in late April, forcing its four million residents to line up at collection points to receive water rations from trucks. Now, after…

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Director’s Report – February 2018

Director’s Report – February 2018

  • February 23, 2018
  • News

February is the month of love! Here at the Hill Country Alliance, one of the things we love most is the wide-open lands of the Hill Country. Rolling hills, deep canyons, wooded grottos, and wide river basins are just a few of the things that define our special region. We share this love by working with landowners and partners across 17 counties to preserve the Hill Country’s open spaces and working ranchlands. As more and more people move to our…

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Commissioners debate the creation and funding of a groundwater conservation district in southwest Travis County

Commissioners debate the creation and funding of a groundwater conservation district in southwest Travis County

Commissioners recently debated over whether to hold an election to create and fund a conservation district that would regulate, protect and conserve the groundwater supply derived from the Trinity Aquifer, one of nine major aquifers in the state. In January 2017, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, or TCEQ, recommended to the 85th Legislature that a regulatory entity be created to protect an area over the Trinity Aquifer which is not covered by any groundwater conservation district. State Rep. Paul…

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