Hays County kicks off Wimberley Valley Trails Initiative

Hays County kicks off Wimberley Valley Trails Initiative

Hays County is kicking-off its new Wimberley Valley Trails initiative, an effort to develop a multi-year vision to improve connectivity in the City of Wimberley and surrounding areas. This vision includes a system of hike and bike trails, multi-modal transportation options, and other strategies to help connect people with nature and link regional points of interest in the community. Read more from San Marcos Corridor News here.

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Manager of the SA River Authority to step down, lead The Nature Conservancy in Texas

Manager of the SA River Authority to step down, lead The Nature Conservancy in Texas

Suzanne Scott, the longtime general manager of the San Antonio River Authority, is planning to step down at the end of October to take over as the The Nature Conservancy’s state director in Texas, according to news releases. Scott worked for the river authority for more than two decades, of which 13 years she spent running the agency as general manager, according to a news release from the agency. Read more from Marina Starleaf Riker with San Antonio Express-News here.

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‘God is not making more Honey Creeks’: Longtime neighbors clash over planned Hill Country development

‘God is not making more Honey Creeks’: Longtime neighbors clash over planned Hill Country development

Fed by water pouring out of Honey Creek Cave, the stream forms a series of pools and riffles, shaded by towering cypress and sycamore trees. Bass, sunfish, and other native fish dart beneath the lily pads dotting the surface of the clear water. Biologists consider the creek one of the most pristine examples left in the region of what Hill Country creeks looked like before European settlement. Development was probably inevitable for this area on the northern fringes of the…

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Major pipelines hit legal snags. But it’s business as usual in Texas.

Major pipelines hit legal snags. But it’s business as usual in Texas.

Early on, Kinder Morgan faced opposition from individuals, local governments and conservation groups. EHN visited Hill Country—a unique landscape known for its rolling terrain in central Texas—and found that environmentalists and some who are pro-development had gained a common enemy. A barrage of lawsuits in Hill Country challenged the company, as well as the Railroad Commission of Texas and the Army Corps of Engineers, which are both responsible for permitting and oversight. But the project broke ground last year, with…

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Preserving the view of the Night Stars in the Texas Hill Country

Preserving the view of the Night Stars in the Texas Hill Country

Can you see stars at night where you live? Or, do you live in an area where the streetlights and other light sources obscure the night stars? The Hill Country Alliance is working to protect and preserve our view of the night skies in the wonderful Texas Hill Country. Our guest on Shades of Green is Cliff Kaplan, the Night Sky and Community Program Manager at the Hill Country Alliance. He shares the details of the program and provides pro-active…

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To manage wildfire, California looks to what tribes have known all along

To manage wildfire, California looks to what tribes have known all along

Fire has always been part of California’s landscape. But long before the vast blazes of recent years, Native American tribes held annual controlled burns that cleared out underbrush and encouraged new plant growth. Now, with wildfires raging across Northern California, joining other record-breaking fires from recent years, government officials say tackling the fire problem will mean bringing back “good fire,” much like California’s tribes once did. Read more Lauren Sommer with NPR here.

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Water, Texas: Border wall concerns in Lower Rio Grande Valley diminished by virus and growth

Water, Texas: Border wall concerns in Lower Rio Grande Valley diminished by virus and growth

Before it turns right and heads straight north to the Dakotas, US 281 spends its first 46 miles close to the Rio Grande in South Texas. The two-lane highway slips out of downtown Brownsville and bends west through a Lower Rio Grande Valley landscape renowned in Texas for binding water, agriculture, and ecology in a tumult of ferocious urban growth, nationally significant environmental restoration, and political turmoil… On the highway’s south side, distant stands of spiny hackberry and western soapberry…

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The stars at night are big and bright

The stars at night are big and bright

The stars may be big and bright deep in the Heart of Texas, but they’re only visible when there are sky is dark. Whether you’re in Texas or anywhere else in the world, light pollution continues to distort our ability to enjoy the night sky, and it wreaks havoc on the natural world. We talk with Cliff Kaplan with the Hill Country Alliance and Chloe Crumley with the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) to learn about the importance of dark…

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Germany plans to dim lights at night to save insects

Germany plans to dim lights at night to save insects

In a draft law seen by AFP, the country’s environment ministry has drawn up a number of new measures to protect insects, ranging from partially outlawing spotlights to increased protection of natural habitats. “Insects play an important role in the ecosystem…but in Germany, their numbers and their diversity has severely declined in recent years,” reads the draft law, for which the ministry hopes to get cabinet approval by October. Read more from Kit Holden from Phys.org here. 

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After Willie Nelson and Paul Simon complained, CEO agrees to reroute Hill Country pipeline

After Willie Nelson and Paul Simon complained, CEO agrees to reroute Hill Country pipeline

After a pipeline drilling mishap in March that led to a spill of tens of thousands of gallons of slurry into an underground aquifer in Blanco County, muddying nearby wells, the CEO of a natural gas pipeline company now says he is rerouting the pipeline around — rather than under — the Blanco River. In an opinion piece in the Houston Chronicle this week, Steven Kean, chief executive of Houston-based pipeline company Kinder Morgan, said that “we have decided that…

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