‘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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Healthy Creeks Initiative underway

Healthy Creeks Initiative underway

Contractors will soon begin the annual control efforts to manage Arundo along the Pedernales River and several tributary creeks. Arundo, also referred to as Giant Reed or Carrizo Cane, is a non-native, invasive plant that can take over creeks and rivers. Since 2016, the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department (TPWD), Hill Country Alliance (HCA), City of Fredericksburg, and other organizations have partnered with participating landowners through the Healthy Creeks Initiative to control Arundo and enhance the creek-side (or riparian) habitat…

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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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Millions of pounds of pollution released before Hurricane Laura

Millions of pounds of pollution released before Hurricane Laura

Texas refineries and chemical plants told state regulators they released millions of pounds of air pollution into the air in recent days as the plants rushed to close facilities ahead of Hurricane Laura’s landfall… Together, Texas facilities announced plans to release 4 million pounds of air pollution in the Beaumont and Port Arthur areas before Laura hit, according to a tally of state notices by Environment Texas, an environmental nonprofit group in Texas. That’s the equivalent of putting about 140,000…

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Hardberger Park land bridge in final stretch of development ahead of fall opening

Hardberger Park land bridge in final stretch of development ahead of fall opening

Phil Hardberger Park’s Robert L.B. Tobin Land Bridge is approaching its final stages of construction and is expected to be completed in the fall. The 150-foot-wide bridge will connect the east and west areas of Phil Hardberger Park, creating a safe passage for people and animals while replicating the surrounding environment. It will include a SkyWalk, or elevated walkway, that extends to the treetops and a trail designed to accommodate people with disabilities, including those using wheelchairs, that connects to…

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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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San Antonio aquifer, trail advocates lament sales tax vote

San Antonio aquifer, trail advocates lament sales tax vote

Environmental advocates were dismayed Thursday after City Council set up a shift of sales tax funding away from the Edwards Aquifer and San Antonio’s trail network, with some saying they plan to focus on ensuring replacement funding. San Antonio City Council voted 9-2 Thursday to put a measure on the November ballot to devote a one-eight-cent sales tax to workforce development for four years before shifting to VIA Metropolitan Transit. The tax currently funds the City’s trails and aquifer protection…

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Abbott on Hurricane Laura: ‘We did dodge a bullet’ in Texas

Abbott on Hurricane Laura: ‘We did dodge a bullet’ in Texas

  • August 27, 2020
  • News

After Hurricane Laura left less destruction in Texas than had been expected and feared, Gov. Greg Abbott said Thursday: “We did dodge a bullet.” Even so, Abbott said, an aerial survey revealed significant damage, particularly in Orange, which sits about 40 miles west from where the dangerous Category 4 storm made landfall around 1 a.m. in Cameron Parish, La. Read more from Chuck Lindell with the Austin American-Statesman here.

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