Water, Texas: Three thirsty Texas cities are global leaders in water innovation

Water, Texas: Three thirsty Texas cities are global leaders in water innovation

Emily Dickinson once wrote that “water is taught by thirst.” In Texas, a state that knows no bounds of economic ambition but is regularly disciplined by deep droughts, water is indeed taught by thirst. That is especially true in three big Texas cities that are globally significant innovators in water planning, technology, and use. Austin adopted a 100-year water plan in 2018 that essentially calls for conservation and recycling programs so advanced that the city anticipates supplying a healthy share…

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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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Texas Hill Country pipeline project moves forward, despite pleas from Willie Nelson and Paul Simon

Texas Hill Country pipeline project moves forward, despite pleas from Willie Nelson and Paul Simon

Houston pipeline operator Kinder Morgan moved forward on a controversial natural gas pipeline through the Texas Hill Country the same day that legendary musicians Willie Nelson and Paul Simon issued a public plea for the company to halt the project. Nelson, also known as the Red-Headed Stranger, and Simon on Tuesday voiced their opposition to the Permian Highway Pipeline in op-ed in the Houston Chronicle. The pipeline is a $2 billion project to move 2 billion cubic feet of natural…

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Meadows Center, Wimberley Library District announce partnership, plan for ‘One Water’ in library renovation

Meadows Center, Wimberley Library District announce partnership, plan for ‘One Water’ in library renovation

The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment at Texas State University and the Wimberley Village Library District Board of Trustees have teamed up to launch a new One Water project for the Wimberley Valley community. With technical support from the Meadows Center, the planned 15,000-square-foot library expansion and a 3.8-acre lot will be designed for both water conservation and water quality protection while serving as a community laboratory and educational resource for natural resource protection. Read more from San…

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Willie Nelson and Paul Simon: Save Texas Hill Country and stop the Permian Highway Pipeline

Willie Nelson and Paul Simon: Save Texas Hill Country and stop the Permian Highway Pipeline

The Texas Hill Country is a gift from Mother Nature. Sprawling over 986 square miles in the heart of the state, it is a wonder of rolling grasslands, pastures of pecan, mesquite, desert willow and oak. Fields of bluebonnet, the state flower, line the highways. The region is a pristine, bio-diverse ecological gem, one of the most treasured landscapes of the American Southwest. But the pride and lifeblood of this unique part of the world are the granite and karst…

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Llano County commissioners, residents voice concerns over sand plant

Llano County commissioners, residents voice concerns over sand plant

Not one of the more than a dozen people sharing their thoughts July 13 about a proposed sand-excavation project on private property on County Road 309 outside of Kingsland had a good thing to say about it. Several voiced concerns that the Llano County Commissioners Court would even consider allowing such an operation. “The county is pretty limited, frankly, with the authority we have here,” said Llano County Precinct 1 Commissioner Peter Jones. “We do not have land-use authority.” Read…

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Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District emergency information for well owners

Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District emergency information for well owners

Press Release: Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District – For Immediate Release: July 10, 2020 Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District well owners, The Kinder Morgan Pipeline Company is constructing a large natural gas pipeline from west to east through central Hays County that will convey 2 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day from the Permian Basin to the Houston area. The pipeline will pass directly over terrain that is highly porous and vulnerable to surface contamination. District geologists have…

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Water safety supply lines: What it takes to keep water clean

Water safety supply lines: What it takes to keep water clean

A lot goes into making water safe. Before drinking water reaches the tap, and after wastewater leaves a building, water goes through series of filtration systems that remove the “big” stuff. But that is not the end of the system; disinfection is a key part of keeping the water system safe. “At a very late stage, when all the nutrient and organics have been removed by either the physical, chemical and biological processes, you’re still left with some bacteria,” explained…

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A pipeline poisons the wells in Hill Country

A pipeline poisons the wells in Hill Country

From the moment Kinder Morgan and its business partners announced that their 430-mile Permian Highway Pipeline would cross the Texas Hill Country, landowners, environmentalists, elected officials and groundwater protection agencies along or near the route have fought tooth and nail to move it or stop it. And they openly warned of the precise danger landowners such as Albright now face: disturbing the “karst” features below their property. Like underground Swiss cheese, they serve as conduits for groundwater that, in a…

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Texas moves ahead on discharging oil wastewater, even as EPA balks

Texas moves ahead on discharging oil wastewater, even as EPA balks

Environmental officials in Texas and other western states are moving ahead on plans to allow oil and gas companies to treat drilling wastewater and discharge it into rivers and streams, even as the Trump administration balks at endorsing the practice amid widespread questions about public health effects. In a report last month, the Environmental Protection Agency not only outlined concerns from scientists and environmentalists about the toxins in the hundreds of billions of gallons of wastewater produced each year by…

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