Environment

As part of Texas Public Radio's on-going focus on the environment, we are proud to bring the public and our members special events, stories and initiatives to help improve and draw attention to the city's health and environment.

In 1922, seven Western states — Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Wyoming and California — drew up an agreement on how to divide the waters of the Colorado River. But there was one big problem with the plan: They overestimated how much water the river could provide.

As a result, each state was promised more water than actually exists. This miscalculation — and the subsequent mismanagement of water resources in those states — has created a water crisis that now affects nearly 40 million Americans.

Texas Wind Power Subsidies In Jeopardy

Jun 25, 2015

Texas leads the United States in the production of wind power, largely in thanks to a state mandate that utilities source a certain amount of electricity from renewables.

Wind power provides 10 percent of the Lone Star State’s energy. The industry uses a combination of private investment for production and government subsidies for transmission lines.

But there’s a movement to repeal state subsidies for wind power. Reporter Lorne Matalon of Marfa Public Radio reports.

Texas Parks and Wildlife

  A group of state and local agencies is putting together a series of workshops for landowners and volunteers who are working on cleaning up debris from Memorial Day floods on the Blanco River.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, the Texas Forest Service, the Nature Conservancy and other groups are concerned that people may be doing more harm than good by burning fallen trees and digging out debris from the river banks.

After Fracking Ban, Denton Residents Ponder Next Steps

Jun 3, 2015
Courtesy: Brandi Korte / Frack Free Denton

DENTON – Frustrated and grasping for options that weren’t apparent, Denton residents flooded a city council meeting Tuesday night to assess where things stand after state lawmakers smacked down an ordinance voters passed last fall to ban hydraulic fracturing within city limits. 

The key question before the council: Should it remove the now-toothless ordinance from its books to stave off further legal trouble, or keep it to strike a symbolic blow for local control on the off chance that the law will prove useful again some day? 

“We find ourselves today at a melancholy crossroads,” said Adam Briggle, a North Texas University philosophy professor and one of six advocates arrested since Monday for trying to prevent a gas company from resuming fracking operations. “It is certainly disheartening, and it’s confusing.” 

Weather Is 'Not Political,' Says Texas Climatologist

Jun 2, 2015

From Texas Standard:

It seems that every major weather event is followed by a conversation about climate change, and the Memorial Day floods in Texas are no different. These historic storms have left more than 20 dead in Texas and Oklahoma, and Governor Abbott has declared around 70 counties as disaster zones.

Of course the climate change conversation is called out as insensitive by some, like Texas Senator Ted Cruz who thinks it’s wrong to “politicize a natural disaster." For others, it’s a tragic necessity.

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