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New Water Institute To Explore The Resource’s Impact On Society

New water institute to explore the resource’s impact on society

UTSA has launched the Institute for Water Research, Sustainability and Policy. Led by Saugata Datta, the Weldon W. Hammond Jr. Endowed Distinguished Professor in Hydrogeology, the institute brings together faculty across UTSA to collaborate in the areas of water quality, water quantity, flood control and water policy. Researchers will study the effect of climate change on water resources in the San Antonio area, South Texas region, I-10 corridor and the United States-Mexico border. Eventually, they will expand their studies to…

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January 2021 Hydro Report

January 2021 Hydro Report

Flow at Jacob’s Well is approaching zero.  The USGS daily average for January 21 was 0.9 cubic feet per second (cfs), which is up slightly after rainfall earlier this week.  Flow in the upper reaches of the Blanco River is reliant on baseflow provided by Trinity Springs, and Pleasant Valley and Park Springs only measure about 12 cfs (according to the USGS gage at Fischer Store Rd). Thankfully, the National Weather Service forecast still includes rain in the next few…

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Rain, Wind And Fire: What La Niña Means For Texas’ Winter Fire Season

Rain, wind and fire: What La Niña means for Texas’ winter fire season

Texas’ winter/spring wildfire season is about to begin. Fire experts predict it could be a particularly active season due in large part to the presence of La Niña this year. The weather pattern often brings drier, warmer weather, and strong winds: the perfect recipe for fire. “Mid-February through mid-April is the peak of winter/spring fire season,” said Brad Smith. Smith is the predictive services department head at Texas A&M Forest Service, a division of Texas A&M AgriLife. Read more from…

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It’s Time To Pay Attention To The Water We Cannot See

It’s time to pay attention to the water we cannot see

Texas’ rivers are iconic. The groundwater that sustains them is invisible. We see the dichotomy in state law. Naturally flowing water in rivers and streams is owned by the state and held in trust for the public good. That’s because we can see that water and what it means. It provides for our cities, towns, farms, and ranches. We live, work and play beside it. And we rely on state law to prevent it from vanishing. But groundwater law offers…

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US Supreme Court Dismisses Texas Petition For Review In Pecos River Dispute

US Supreme Court dismisses Texas petition for review in Pecos River dispute

The Pecos river runs from the Sangre de Cristo Mountains near Santa Fe, New Mexico through New Mexico and Texas and eventually into the Rio Grande River at the Texas-Mexico border near Del Rio, Texas.  In 1949, Texas and New Mexico signed the Pecos River Compact, and Congress ratified the Compact.  The Compact provides for the “equitable division and apportionment of the use of the waters of the Pecos River” with the intent to “remove causes of present and future…

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Mothering Earth Podcast: Watering Outdoors Tips

Mothering Earth Podcast: Watering outdoors tips

Mothering Earth Podcast: Watering outdoors tips Most of the water we use is used outdoors. A lot of it goes to watering lawns. Water conservation outside the house means designing gardens that use less water, and using more efficient ways of watering plants.This program provides practical advice that you can put to use immediately, to become a wise user of one of our most precious resources, namely water. Learn more and listen to the podcast from Mothering Earth here. https://soundcloud.com/salwak/mothering-earth-76-watering-outdoors-tips

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Texas A&M Expert: Drought Has Returned To Texas

Texas A&M Expert: Drought has returned to Texas

Texas A&M Expert: Drought Has Returned To Texas State Climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon says drier and warmer conditions over much of the state could last until spring. October is usually one of the wettest months in Texas, but many parts of the state received little or no rain during the period. The situation is especially bad in West Texas: In the past six months in Midland, only 1.45 inches of rain have been recorded, breaking a 69-year-old record by an inch,…

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Farmers Are Depleting The Ogallala Aquifer Because The Government Pays Them To Do I

Farmers are depleting the Ogallala Aquifer because the government pays them to do i

A slow-moving crisis threatens the U.S. Central Plains, which grow a quarter of the nation’s crops. Underground, the region’s lifeblood – water – is disappearing, placing one of the world’s major food-producing regions at risk. The Ogallala-High Plains Aquifer is one of the world’s largest groundwater sources, extending from South Dakota down through the Texas Panhandle across portions of eight states. Its water supports US$35 billion in crop production each year. Read more from Matthew R Sanderson, Burke Griggs, and…

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Can Texas Stop Its Taps Running Dry?

Can Texas stop its taps running dry?

In many ways, the story of Texas over the last century is the state’s devout allegiance to the principle that mankind has dominion over nature. The COVID-19 pandemic shut down that idea in 2020. By 11 October, nearly 800,000 people had been infected in Texas and over 16,000 died. The sharp and irrepressible rise in virus cases and mortality adds to the intensifying view among Texans that far from living in a place distant from the vagaries of nature, Texas…

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Imperiled Central Texas Mussels Bring Conservation Focus To The San Saba River

Imperiled Central Texas mussels bring conservation focus to the San Saba River

Miles down an easy-to-miss dirt road just outside San Saba, Texas, a group of university, non-profit, state and federal researchers has converged on a remote stretch of the San Saba River. A biologist walking along the bank points out empty freshwater mussel shells with quirky names – pimpleback, pistolgrip, papershell – casualties of stranding during a time when the water ran too low. Pointing just a few yards downstream, he indicates a spot where one of their populations washed away…

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