Environment

Environment
3:33 pm
Fri October 17, 2014

Saving the Bracken Bat Cave

Up to 20 million bats fly from the Bracken Bat Cave each night during the summer. They eat a total of 100 tons of insects from the crops grown in South Texas.
Credit Jacqueline Ferrato / Bat Conservation International

 

San Antonio City Councilman Ron Nirenberg announced an agreement last week to protect the world’s largest bat cave from encroachment by future development.

The city will join with several other entities to turn the 1,500-acre property, known as Crescent Hills, into a conservation easement that will permanently protect the area’s natural resources. 

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Gardening
12:22 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

Why Going Native Is the Smartest Thing You Can Do This Fall

Bigtooth Maple
Jack Morgan

As Texas slowly begins its cool-down, many people turn their thoughts toward landscaping in the fall and  winter.  Landscaping is tough work, but there are things you can do to make it easier, and also cheaper. How? Well, you need to go native.   

“Native Plant Week is a week that has been designated to make people more aware of using native plants in their landscape.”

Mary Moses is with Comal County’s Native Plant Society of Texas.

“Using Native Plants makes for a healthier habitat that supports wildlife. Bees…it just makes the earth more healthy.”

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Environment
1:04 am
Mon September 8, 2014

"Bee-Whisperer" Promotes Protection Of Nature's Tiny Workers

Walter Schumacher takes a honeycomb out of a bucket during the removal of 150,000 honey bees at a San Antonio home.
Ryan Loyd TPR News

One San Antonio woman is relieved that her bee problem is finally gone. But Norma Ramon now knows not to call any more exterminators if honey bees invade her home. She'll call the "Bee Whisperer."

After months of honey bees building a hive that grew to at least 4 feet by 2 feet, 150,000 bees would not go away even after exterminators tried to kill them off.

"I had a couple of companies come out and work on it and they tried their best, they really did, and nothing happened," she said.

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Solar Power
10:38 am
Fri September 5, 2014

With Activation Of New Solar Site, OCI Brings Power To 25,000 More Homes Per Year

OCI's Alamo 2 solar farm.
Credit Ryan Loyd / TPR News

OCI Solar Power announced Thursday that it has "flipped the switch" on 39 megawatts of solar power at the Alamo 4 project, making the newly completed solar farm just west of San Antonio operational.

OCI officials say the company is on track to bring an additional 145 megawatts of solar power to the state by the end of this year.

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Green Construction
9:49 am
Fri September 5, 2014

CPS Energy Rewards University Hospital For Energy-Efficient Buildings With $500,000

University Hospital's new Sky Tower increased green space to cool the property, including healing gardens integrated into the building and landscapes designed to produce a lush tree canopy over 50 percent of the site within five years
Credit UHS

  University Health System Thursday accepted a check for half a million dollars in rebates for energy savings. It was the second large, commercial rebate announced this week.

George Hernandez, president and CEO of University Health System, said the new University Hospital Sky Tower is designed to use 20% less energy than a similar structure built to “normal” building codes.

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Environment
9:08 am
Thu September 4, 2014

SARA Approves Lower Tax Rate Due To Higher Home Values

Officials take a look at the new paddling trail on the Mission Reach of the San Antonio River
Credit Bexar County

  

It’s that time of year again, when taxing entities come up with new budgets and go to taxpayers with rate increases – or in some cases, decreases.

The San Antonio River Authority is one of those taxing entities and has set a new, lower tax rate for the next fiscal year, but it means a slight increase for most homeowners because of rising property values.

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Natural Gas Fracking
12:59 pm
Wed August 27, 2014

Texas Railroad Commission Introduces New Rules For Fracking Injection Wells

Credit Flickr user Daniel Foster / cc

A seismologist for the Texas Railroad Commission updated the Texas House Energy Resources Committee about the findings of a study on the number of earthquakes occurring near fracking injection well sites.

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Air Quality
4:06 pm
Wed August 13, 2014

San Antonio Getting State Help With Air Quality Plan

Credit City of San Antonio

The state of Texas will be helping San Antonio meet air quality standards. During a city council committee meeting Wednesday, San Antonio's intergovernmental relations director, Jeff Coyle, told members that a plan will be drafted by the state to allow local leaders to choose how to best solve the region's air quality needs.

The state has agreed to do a draft a study for San Antonio to identify air quality solutions that local leaders can implement.

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Texas Water
1:02 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Abbott Threatens EPA With Lawsuit Over Proposed Water Regulations For "Ditches"

Credit EPA

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott is threatening to sue the Environmental Protection Agency for a new set of proposed water protections. Abbott wants the EPA to scrap a plan that expands the definition of federal waterways.

The EPA wants to include seasonal and rain-dependent waterways. The agency said it would stiffen penalties for polluting those waterways that supply drinking water.

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Environment
4:44 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance Calls For SAWS Moratorium On Development

Analisa Peace, executive director of the Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance.
Joey Palacios TPR News

The Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance is calling on the San Antonio Water System to place a moratorium on the construction of new developments in Northern Bexar County over concerns of sewer lines under creekbeds.

There are several new housing developments under construction in the Hwy. 218 and TCP Parkway area. The Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance claims it has seen diminished water quality over the last few years due to new developments.

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