Environment

Environment Design
9:16 am
Wed July 10, 2013

Low-Impact Development Competition Heats Up, Showcases Water Runoff Designs

San Antonio River Authority

The San Antonio River Authority is working with architects and planners to think globally about the impacts of new developments on the watershed.

As part of the awareness program, SARA’s Low Impact Development Design Competition comes to a conclusion this week.

It seems like a simple concept: Design a project, building or parking lot from the beginning to efficiently and effectively make water go to the right places.  

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Lake Dunlap Water
4:52 pm
Mon July 8, 2013

SAWS Switches Water Source For Northeast Bexar County

Area of Bexar County affected by water switch.
SAWS

Residents in Northeast Bexar County will have a different water source for the next several weeks as the San Antonio Water System addresses water concerns from Lake Dunlap.

The affected area of customers are between IH-35 and IH-10, inside 1604 -- an area previously served by BexarMet. Those customers are now using Edwards Aquifer water for the time being.

SAWS Spokeswoman Anne Hayden said warmer weather in the shallow lake Dunlap caused algae to flare up.

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Bracken Bat Cave
4:13 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

SAWS Stands Firm In Decision To Serve Neighborhood Near Bracken Bat Cave

Bats begin to take flight from the Bracken Bat Cave in June, just weeks before the maternity colony was set to give birth.
Ryan Loyd TPR

A trio of opponents against a proposed community near the Bracken Bat Cave once again appealed to the San Antonio Water System to rescind its decision to provide the area with water and sewer service.

The board made that decision in March, and by law is required to provide service to developments in its coverage area.

SAWS spokesperson Greg Flores said the water provider is not backing down from its position.

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Environment
2:36 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

CPS Energy Says SA Is Well On Its Way To 2020 Power Savings Goal

CPS Energy

CPS Energy set a goal to reduce the community’s electric usage by 771 megawatts by the year 2020, which is essentially the output of a large power plant.

With the help of the Save for Tomorrow Energy Plan, CPS Energy reports that they are on its way to the goal.

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Bracken Bat Cave
9:12 am
Tue July 2, 2013

Aquifer Alliance Says SAWS Has Alternative In Bat Cave Controversy

Bat Conservation International

The Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance said the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality can issue a variance to its rule that SAWS provide water to the Crescent Hills Subdivision, which is located near the Bracken Bat Cave.

SAWS has said it has no choice but to provide the sewer and water mains because of its Certificate of Convenience and Necessity, but GEAA Executive Director Annalisa Peace said the group's attorneys have research the issue and say the TCEQ can change the certificate at the request of SAWS.

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Environment
12:30 pm
Fri May 31, 2013

Tesoro Penalized For EPA Violations At Fuel Refineries

EPA

San Antonio-based Tesoro Corporation has agreed to a settlement to resolve claims that it failed to comply with regulations under the Clean Air Act.

While the $1.1 million penalty seems low, the Environmental Protection Agency called the settlement the largest penalty for these types of violations in the history of the fuels program. 

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Environment
10:11 am
Thu May 30, 2013

Speakers Protest Development At City Council, But Can Council Do Anything?

A rare view from inside the Bracken Bat Cave when the bats have migrated to Mexico for the winter. Hoses vacuum out guano for use as fertilizer.
Eileen Pace

San Antonio City Council last night heard three hours of pleas from opponents of a high-density housing development who said it will be the beginning of the end of the Bracken Bat Cave.

Dozens of speakers came to ask council to prohibit SAWS from building sewer lines to the Comal County project.

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Environment
1:54 pm
Wed May 29, 2013

Environmental Group Asking Council To Overturn SAWS Sewer Agreement for Comal Development

Bat Conservation International

A regional water watchdog group is asking for the City of San Antonio’s help in shutting down the efforts of a developer who wants to build a high-density neighborhood north of San Antonio.

The Crescent Hill development is situated on the banks of Cibolo Creek and has a San Antonio address. It advertises on its website that it is the first conservation development in Comal County, embracing the principles of sustainability and connectivity.

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Flash Flood
1:25 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

Mission Reach Under Inspection For Structural Damage

Washed-out paths like this one are being inspected by SARA officials.
Paul Flahive TPR

The Mission Reach of the San Antonio River is still closed today but maintenance crews are making progress.

San Antonio River Authority spokesman Steven Schauer said inspections of the Mission Reach began Saturday as soon as it was safe to go out. He said maintenance began over the holiday weekend, first cleaning up the Museum Reach and then turning attention to the Mission Reach, which suffered greater damage.

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Environment and Energy
11:04 am
Wed May 22, 2013

ERCOT Predicts Another Grid-Busting Summer

Southern region drought monitor map for May 14. Though temperatures will not be "as hot" as 2011, it will put strain on the electric grid.
U.S. Drought Monitor

National forecasters are predicting another hotter-than-normal summer. That could mean more of the rolling blackouts likes those San Antonio experienced in 2011.

Climatologists predict temperatures will be above normal this year and the power grid may not be able to keep up. The North American Electric Reliability Corporation projects the Texas grid will have the lowest percentage of power reserves this summer of any region in the country.

The problem is rapidly-growing demand combined with a lack of new power plants being built.

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