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Opinion: Texas needs private investment to vastly enhance its water supplies

At a time when Texas continues it’s massive population growth, yet is experiencing declining water supplies and persistent drought, it is apparent that water remains the limiting factor to maintaining and growing our vibrant Texas economy. Over the decade from 2010 to...

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Welcome to the River Recharge Natural Area

SMGA is happy to announce the addition of a seventh natural area to the San Marcos Greenbelt. Known for years simply as the Buie Tract, these roughly 94 acres have been renamed River Recharge Natural Area (RReNA), due to the many karst features on the property....

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Private lands are the next battleground in state conservation policy.

Since last year, staff members at the Land Trust of Virginia have fielded phone call after phone call from landowners seeking to set aside their property for conservation. “We’re getting calls like crazy,” said Sally Price, executive director of the nonprofit, which...

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Seven ways climate change is already affecting Texas

Climate change has been warned by scientists for years, and through heat waves with unreasonably high temperatures, the state of Texas is already suffering the consequences of this phenomenon in various ways. Read more from the Reform Austin Staff at Reform Austin...

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Editor’s Note: Preserved Paradise

I’ve lived in the Hill Country for five years now, yet I’m still finding new reasons to admire its grandeur on a regular basis. I love that my kids get to grow up in such a beautiful, wild landscape, and I hope their kids will have the same opportunity. As Central...

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Keep Bastrop Boring: Central Texas man wars with Elon Musk’s Boring Company

Just after 7 p.m. on May 3, a tall, bearded man in a white Stetson strolled up to the microphone positioned in front of Kyle City Council and spilled his guts about Elon Musk and his Boring Company’s forays into Texas. On that day, the company wished to get a...

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TESPA initiates legal action to protect water & endangered species

The Trinity Edwards Springs Protection Association (TESPA) has sent the attached Notice of Intent (NOI) to sue Far South Mining LLC to stop the proposed quarry and rock crushing plant on the Needmore Ranch between Wimberley and San Marcos in Hays County, TX. The legal...

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Unique and creative approaches for conservation

Editorial by Commissioner Lon Shell As our population surges, will the Hill Country retain its character? I believe it can, however it is a challenge that will require unique and creative approaches to balance that growth with preservation of the very things that...

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When a quarry closes, can its damage be undone?

A hypnotic maze of subdivisions stretches along Anderson Mill Road as you drive north out of Austin. Then, just before you reach downtown Cedar Park, towering mounds of loose rock rise like ashes from a giant cigarette. Throughout the Texas Hill Country, this sort of...

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Texas cities are booming. I feel it in the country.

About a year ago, I was kayaking down the Llano River, about 80 miles west of Austin, Texas. It’s spring-fed and runs through the countryside, representative of the state’s beauty. I was paddling a usually serene route when I noticed the water becoming shallow and the...

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Over the moon: City of Blanco becomes 5th Dark Sky community in Texas, 35th on planet Earth

The city of Blanco in Blanco County has joined four other Texas cities — all in the Hill Country as well — as the latest to be granted the sought-after International Dark Sky Community designation. The International Dark-Sky Association announced this week that the...

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Seizing the moment for rural water infrastructure

In February, 2021, Winter Storm Uri shined a light on the fragility of our state’s infrastructure as an energy crisis quickly evolved into a water crisis. However, even before Texas was plunged into the ice, our state’s water infrastructure systems received a C- for...

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Hays County Celebrates Earth Day with Upcoming Land Purchase of Sentinel Peak Preserve

Hays County expects to close on its purchase of the Sentinel Peak Preserve by April 29, 2022, mere days after celebrating Earth Day (April 22). This is the first project funded under the 2020 Hays County Parks and Open Space Bond. Read more from Hays County here.

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Removing the mystery of groundwater

Editorial by Vanessa Puig-Williams, Environmental Defense Fund What makes the Texas Hill Country unique? In my mind, it comes down to one thing: groundwater. It is impossible to overstate the importance of groundwater to this precious region, because without it, the...

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Report finds on-site water reuse can boost affordable housing, spread climate resilience

Strategic integration of onsite water reuse can bring financial and quality-of-life benefits to affordable housing residents, according to an extensive new study by the National Wildlife Federation. The report finds on-site collection, treatment, and non-potable use...

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Protecting the Nueces, a lesson of love and legacy

UPDATE - June 7, 2022 It is with a heavy heart we share news of the passing of Sky Lewey, conservationist, mother, and Nueces River champion on Tuesday, May 31, 2022. Sky dedicated her life, work, and passion to protecting Texas's rivers and touched the hearts and...

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100-mile nature trail connecting Austin to San Antonio springs into next phase

The Great Springs Project has released its Trails Plan, another step along the path to a proposed 100-plus-mile network of trails from the Alamo to the Capitol.The project, launched in 2018, aims to create a corridor of protected lands over the Edwards Aquifer...

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Rethinking our relationship with Hill Country water, before it’s too late

Editorial by Jennifer Walker, National Wildlife Federation Water is an integral part of the Hill Country fabric, and it is embodied in the rivers and springs that make this region special. It is also the single most limiting factor in the Hill Country. The region’s...

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USDA Takes Action to Strengthen Pollinator Research Support.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture today announced its strengthened commitment to advancing research and programmatic priorities that support pollinator health by soliciting nominations for members to serve on its newly formed USDA National Pollinator Subcommittee.The...

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If drought conditions don’t improve, more water restrictions could come to Central Texas.

Drought conditions across the state are getting worse. Here in Austin, many areas are already feeling its effects. Mark Wentzel is the Instream Flows Leader with the Texas Water Development Board. He said Lakes Travis and Buchanan are some of the main water reservoirs...

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