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Out Of Sight, Never Out Of Mind

Out of sight, never out of mind

Out of sight, never out of mind Bioretention basins help keep water quality high for endangered species Bioretention basins come in all shapes and sizes. Some can look like a mere swale in the landscape and others can be highly-landscaped and decorative components of a city’s infrastructure. Whatever the outward appearance each bioretention project might be, the engineered water filtering functionality predominantly takes place below ground and out of sight. “Cities across the country began implementing stormwater treatment practices or…

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Families Threaten To Sue Over Wastewater Released Into Hill Country Waterways

Families threaten to sue over wastewater released into Hill Country waterways

One of the biggest concerns with all the growth in Central Texas is wastewater and what to do with it. For years, the KVUE Defenders have shown the growing number of cities dumping treated wastewater into the rivers and lakes where we get our drinking water and enjoy with our families. Now, the fight against it is landing some cities in court. Read more from KVUE here.

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Process Begins To Form Best Practices For Sand Mining Companies In San Jacinto River Basin

Process begins to form best practices for sand mining companies in San Jacinto River Basin

Process begins to form best practices for sand mining companies in San Jacinto River Basin The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality began a yearlong process in mid-November to form more rules for sand mining in the San Jacinto River Basin. Environmental advocates hope this process will reduce downstream flooding, limit sediment runoff and minimize pollutants discharged from the mines into waterways. During the TCEQ’s virtual stakeholder meeting Nov. 10, Jill Boullion, executive director of the Bayou Land Conservancy, said the…

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Hamilton Pool Road Development Dispute Has Implications For Entire Barton Springs Zone — Key Decision Imminent

Hamilton Pool Road development dispute has implications for entire Barton Springs Zone — Key decision imminent

Update: The "imminent decision" to be taken up by West Travis County PUA at their November 19 meeting was postponed until their next meeting, on December 17. If anyone is feeling nostalgic for a 1980s or early 1990s style Austin growth battle they might want to check in on Bee Cave and the surrounding area. There, residents are locked in a fierce, high stakes battle with the City Council and the West Travis County Public Utility Agency (WTCPUA) over a…

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City, Developers Fight Over Effluent Discharge Rights

City, developers fight over effluent discharge rights

Big changes are coming along the San Marcos River downstream from the city. FM 110, initially envisioned as an eastern loop around San Marcos, is now going in between Staples Road and SH 80, with the San Marcos River bridge currently under construction. When finished, the new road will stretch from SH 123 north to Yarrington Road near Kyle, where it will join Interstate 35. As it does, it will open up a lot of previously inaccessible acreage. Read more…

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Accepting & Loving A River

Accepting & loving a river

The Nueces River is vast, even by Texas standards. It starts high up on the Edwards Plateau. Sourced by emerald, spring-fed creeks in Edwards and Real Counties, the Nueces River cuts through the rocky Hill Country before pivoting amidst the South Texas Brush Country, onward toward the coastal prairie; it pauses at Lake Corpus Christi, before it ultimately empties into the Gulf of Mexico at Nueces Bay. Few, if any, know this river better than Sky Lewey. Born in Uvalde,…

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Dripping Springs Cannot Discharge Treated Wastewater Into Onion Creek Tributary, Texas Court Rules

Dripping Springs cannot discharge treated wastewater into Onion Creek tributary, Texas court rules

The 459th Texas District Court has reversed a wastewater discharge permit issued by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) commissioners to the City of Dripping Springs. The discharge permit, which was issued on Feb. 27, 2019, allowed the City to begin expansion of its wastewater treatment plant and address the area’s growing wastewater needs. The KVUE Defenders reported on the situation in February 2019 when the permit was announced and again in June 2019 when attorneys with Save Our…

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SOS Wins; Judge Reverses Permit That Allowed Dripping Springs To Discharge Into Onion Creek

SOS wins; Judge reverses permit that allowed Dripping Springs to discharge into Onion Creek

Today, Travis County District Court Judge Maya Guerra Gamble struck down a state permit authorizing the City of Dripping Springs to discharge over 800,000 gallons per day of treated sewage into Onion Creek, a prestine water body that is a recharge source for Barton Springs and the Edwards Aquifer. The ruling was made in response to an appeal filed by the Save Our Springs Alliance. After the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) approved Dripping Springs’ requested permit, the SOS…

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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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TESPA Newsletter – Fall 2020

TESPA Newsletter – Fall 2020

In the many decades I have lived in Hays County, the reaction to the multiple threats we face involving our water, aquifers and natural resources is unprecedented. In the past few years, the Kinder Morgan Permian Highway Pipeline (PHP), the Electro Purification (EP), and Needmore groundwater pumping plans have generated immense concern and insecurity among the people who rely on this primary source of drinking water. TESPA is working and collaborating with area landowners, businesses, civic organizations, elected officials and…

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