Thank You for supporting over TEN YEARS of Texas’s longest running water oriented lecture series, and the only Radio Programming dedicated to discussions on water resources!!
Water, essential for life, is our most precious and valuable natural resource. But water supply is limited and under increasing pressure from a growing population. How will we protect this resource and plan for a sustainable future? There is a great need for a water-literate public; decisions being made today have far reaching and long lasting effects for our children and future generations.
For twelve years, the Texas Water Symposium Series has provided perspectives from policy makers, scientists, water resource experts and regional leaders. Join us as we continue our exploration of the complex issues and challenges of providing water for Texans in this century. Each session is free and open to the public. Each hour-long program begins at 7:00 pm, followed by a half hour discussion with Q&A. The events are recorded and aired on Texas Public Radio one week later.
Texas Water Symposium Series is a partnership program of Texas Tech University – Junction, Schreiner University – Kerrville, Texas Public Radio, and the Hill Country Alliance.
Fall 2019 Symposium:
Wednesday November 13, 2019 at Schreiner University, Kerrville ~
Dr. Robert Gulley J.D. — Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, Retired
Chad Norris: Aquatic Biologist, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Andrew G. Gluesenkamp: Director of Conservation, Center for Conservation and Research, San Antonio Zoo
Liza Colucci: Project Manager/Biologist, ZARA Environmental
Ben Hutchins Ph.D.: Assistant Director, Edwards Aquifer Research and Data Center
Our water resources are the lifeblood of the Texas Hill Country. Our precious aquifers and spring-fed rivers and creeks provide our drinking water and allow for irrigation of pastures, farms, and vineyards. They also contribute to the region’s amazing quality of life and, from a practical perspective, help us maintain diverse local economies.
These water resources also nourish the fish and wildlife that call the Hill Country home. Some of that wildlife is found deep underground in our aquifers where millions of years of evolution has transformed them from former surface dwellers into fascinating and highly specialized sightless creatures living in perpetual darkness.
Join us as we explore the mysterious biological world of deep aquifer life and the aquatic conditions required to maintain safe habitat for them — and for us.
Thursday November 21, 2019 at Texas State University, San Marcos ~
Sharlene Leurig: Chief Executive Officer at Texas Water Trade
Dennis Lozano, PE: Vice President – Murfee Engineering
Nick Dornak: Director of Watershed Services – The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment
Katherine Jashinski, PE: Austin Water, Systems Planning
Ian Taylor, PE: Chief Executive Officer, New Braunfels Utility
As the Hill Country continues to grow at unprecedented rates, our demands on limited water resources will increasingly outpace our supplies. An alternative to the status quo is the One Water concept that re-imagines how we manage traditional and non-traditional water sources in order to achieve the triple bottom line—providing benefits for humans, the environment, and the economy.
Implementation of the One Water set of strategies is beginning to surge with a growing list of completed projects and some bold new projects under construction. Accelerating water and energy costs have encouraged Engineers and Developers to design and build projects that look for opportunities to consider all water—including stormwater and wastewater—as potential supply. They are bridging the gap between conceptual ideas and finished construction. They are creating a One Water project portfolio that future clients, builders, and tradesmen can refer — and to which we can hold as examples of water resilience in the Hill Country. Join our panel of experts to learn more!
Spring 2019 Symposium:
Thursday March 28th 2019 at the State Capitol Building ~
Water and the 2019 Legislative Session: The Outlook for Hill Country Water Resources
Vanessa Puig-Williams — Puig Williams Law PLLC
Representative Kyle Biedermann – District 73; Comal, Kendall, & Gillespie Counties
Representative Vikki Goodwin – District 47; Western Travis County
Representative Andrew Murr – District 53; Western Hill Country Counties
Representative Erin Zwiener – District 45; Hays and Blanco Counties
The 86th Texas Legislative session has begun, and lawmakers are considering bills of immediate relevance to the Texas Hill Country. Booming population growth in our region, when coupled with extreme drought and catastrophic flooding, creates myriad management challenges in regards to water resources.
Join state representatives from the Hill Country as they engage in a conversation and public question and answer session to discuss bills that address flooding, treated effluent discharges, water well protection, growth, and support of sound science oriented natural resource policy.
Fall 2018 Symposia:
Thursday November 8th 2018 in Kerrville ~
Treated Sewage and Hill Country Streams: Balancing Population Growth and Healthy Rivers
Anne Rogers Harrison — Water Quality Program Leader, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Nathan Pence – Executive Manager of Environmental Science and Community Affairs, Guadalupe Blanco River Authority
Sky Lewey — Resource Protection and Education Director, Nueces River Authority
Chris Herrington PE — Interim Environmental Officer, City of Austin Watershed Protection
Mary Stone — Board Member of the Texas Real Estate Advocacy and Defense Coalition
Across the Hill Country, we are seeing a proliferation of permit applications to discharge treated wastewater directly into Hill Country creeks and rivers. Population increases are putting pressure on utilities to expand services, and many do not have the technical or financial resources to explore alternatives.
Join Schreiner University, Texas Public Radio, and the Hill Country Alliance for an exploration of how can we accommodate the coming population pressures while protecting our iconic crystal clear rivers and streams? What tools can we use to harness treated effluent’s rich nutrient loads to benefit our landscape without spoiling our waterways?
Thursday November 15th 2018 in San Marcos ~
The Future of Flooding in Texas: How do we protect life and property in the face of extreme weather events?
Bob Rivard — Editor and Publisher of the Rivard Report
Mindy Conyers PhD — State Flood Assessment Coordinator at Texas Water Development Board
Stephen T. Graham, P.E., CFM — Assistant General Manager of San Antonio River Authority
Raymond Slade — Certified Hydrologist, United States Geological Service, Retired
Michael A. Moya, PE, CFM — Water Resources Practice Leader, Halff Associates
The ongoing effects of the Llano River Flood, Hurricane Harvey, the Blanco River flood of 2015, and other flooding events across the state over the past several years have caused tragic loss of life and immense property damage. As communities rebuild, questions about how we ensure the safety of all Texans remain.
Hydrologists and engineers are rethinking our traditional solutions to rising flood waters. Local governments are taking a hard look at infrastructure deficiencies and methods for moving or elevating homes out of the floodplain. The Legislature has directed resources to studying the future impact and mitigation of flooding in Texas.
And yet, Texas does not have a statewide plan for flood mitigation or management. There is growing consensus that flooding in our state is increasing in both frequency and severity. Growth patterns have put large segments of our populations directly in the path of flood waters. How can we ensure that the built environment protects against flooding, rather than increase the severity of flooding?
Join us as we explore ways to prevent future flooding event from turning into a human tragedy.
Previous Symposia from the 2017 – 2018 season
Wednesday May 30, 2018 in Fredericksburg ~
What is “One Water” and can it meet the future water needs of a growing Hill Country?
Jennifer Walker – Senior Program Manager, Texas Living Waters Project
Clinton Bailey P.E. – Assistant City Manager / Director of Public Works & Utilities City of Fredericksburg
Susan Parten P.E. – Principal, Community Environmental Services, Inc.
Laura Talley – Director, Planning and Community Development – City of Boerne
Tim Proctor – Manager, Laney Development
Doors open at 6:30
Program 7:00 – 8:30 pm
Hill Country University Center – Fredericksburg
2818 US-290 Fredericksburg, Tx. 78624
Thursday May 10, 2018 in Junction
Ecosystem Services: How We Can Help Preserve and Protect Our Natural Assets
Moderator: Katherine Romans, Executive Director, Hill Country Alliance
Rep. Andrew Murr, State Representative District 53
Hughes Simpson, Program Leader, Texas A&M Forest Service
Tom Arsuffi Ph.D., Director of the Llano River Field Station at Texas Tech University
Doors open at 6:30
Program 7:00 – 8:30 pm
Texas Tech Field Station – Junction
254 Red Raider Ln. Junction, Tx. 76849
Thursday December 7, 2017 in Boerne ~
Rainwater Harvesting: Innovative Uses and Water Security
Introduction and Comments: Rep. Kyle Biedermann, State Representative District 73
Moderator: Texas Public Radio’s “Organic” Bob Webster
Rep. Jason Isaac, State Representative District 21
John Kight, Kendall County rainwater advocate
Ana Gonzalez PhD., Environmental Scientist, City of Austin Watershed Protection Department
Troy Dorman PhD. P.E., Water Engineer, Tetra Tech Engineering
Declining aquifer levels and the rapidly rising cost of water supply and management has prompted suppliers, builders, and homeowners across the region to turn to alternative sources of water. As we look to a long-term future of increasing population growth and demand on groundwater resources, how can individuals, businesses, and cities create sustainable water supply in innovative ways? How can we incentivize water independence and conservation?
Increasingly, these stakeholders are turning to rainwater as a viable source of water for landscape irrigation, in-home and commercial uses. Cities are now utilizing rainwater harvesting as an innovative stormwater management strategy. Texas, and the Hill Country, is known as a region of rainwater harvesting innovation nationwide.
Sponsored by Harvest Rain Rainwater Collection Systems
Thanks to all who braved the remarkable winter snowstorm and attended this Boerne event !
Thursday November 9, 2017 in Kerrville ~
Climate and Water in Central Texas: Planning for a Changing Resource
Moderator: Weir LaBatt, Former Director of the Texas Water Development Board
Dr. John Nielsen-Gammon, Texas State Climatologist and Regents Professor at Texas A&M
John Zeitler, Science & Operations Officer, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Suzanne Scott, GM, San Antonio River Authority; Chairperson, Region L Water Planning Group and Guadalupe-San Antonio Basin and Bay Stakeholder Committee
Bill Neiman, Founder, Native American Seed Farm, Junction
Our rapidly expanding population coupled with more extreme flooding events and drought cycles is creating short-term management challenges and long-term planning uncertainty. We rely on prevailing climate patterns to plan for development, agriculture, and ranching, but those patterns are changing.
At Native American Seed near Junction, farm manager Bill Neiman notes that “On the Llano River, we are experiencing less regularity in the timing of our seasons, the rains, and traditional temperatures. Investment in successful crops has always been risky, and our changing climate has made it even riskier.”
In order to maintain economic stability, communities across the state need to be able to use and interpret the climate modeling tools we have to predict future weather patterns that inform our management and planning processes.
Join Texas Tech University, Texas Public Radio, Schreiner University and the Hill Country Alliance as we gather diverse perspectives on the challenges of invasive species in Texas – and the future of Texas water resources.
Listen to the program here.
The Texas Water Symposium is free and open to the public.