Environment

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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Environment
11:27 am
Tue May 21, 2013

Museum Reach Oil Spill Declared Minor, Area Wildlife Not Affected

Officials say wildlife on the San Antonio River were unaffected by the oil spill washed into the San Antonio River by heavy rains on April 27.
Eileen Pace TPR

As the investigation continues into the cause of the oil spill that heavy rains carried into the San Antonio River on the final Saturday of Fiesta last month, officials say the spill has been remediated and restoration is almost complete. 

They said it was a perfect storm: An unknown amount of oil spilling into the street during Fiesta, when hundreds of cars had driven up and down Broadway, and a heavy rain that washed everything down the hill on 10th Street and into the river along the east bank of the Museum Reach.

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Flood Control
11:02 am
Tue May 14, 2013

Bexar County Meeting With Residents On Flood Control Project For VFW Blvd.

Bexar County

Bexar County is beginning a new project in its 10-year, $500 million flood control plan, and the public is invited to ask questions about the project at tonight’s information session.

The meeting is to inform residents, business people and other members of the public what will be affected by the $8.5 million project on VFW Blvd. near Roosevelt Avenue.

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BP Oil Spill
3:47 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

BP To Pay Texas $18 Million From Deepwater Horizon Disaster

National Wildlife Federation (NWFblogs on Flickr) cc

Texas is included in five of 28 restoration projects across the Gulf of Mexico under a conditional agreement between BP and Natural Resource Damage Assessment trustees.

Texas Parks and Wildlife spokesman Tom Harvey said although the Texas coast was less visibly impacted by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, Texas wildlife was affected.

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Museum Reach
3:53 pm
Fri May 3, 2013

TCEQ Confident It Will Find Source Of Museum Reach Oil Spill

Oil-soaked berms, which line the landscaping to prevent mulch and other items from washing into the river, will be replaced.
Eileen Pace TPR News

Several agencies are now investigating an oil spill that flowed into the San Antonio River at 10th Street last weekend.

So much rain came down over the weekend and Monday that it is difficult for the agencies to measure the amount of oil that washed down Avenue B to 10th Street, over the berms, through the grass, and into the river.

Tests by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality have determined that the spill was petroleum oil.

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Museum Reach
4:06 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Updated: Oil Spill Flows Into San Antonio River Near Museum Reach

Site along Museum Reach where oil washed into the river.
Eileen Pace TPR

Update: (May 3 12:08 p.m.) The test results found that the oil is petroleum based, but SARA still doesn't know where the oil originated.

The TCEQ and SARA have agreed that they will share the cost of restoring the vegetation and grass in the affected areas.

Update: (May 3, 9:45 a.m.) Still no word on the sample results from SARA or the TCEQ.

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Medina Lake
5:08 pm
Mon April 29, 2013

SAWS Discontinues Use Of Medina Lake Water

Medina Lake on Jan. 31, 2013
Flickr user jwhippy cc

The water in Medina Lake has fallen so low that the San Antonio Water System is no longer drawing water from it. The shift will affect the water source for the southern portion of Bexar County.

At the end of last week, SAWS shut off its pump in Medina Lake, which is now only five percent full.

"The water remaining is developing some water quality issues," said SAWS Spokeswoman Ann Hayden.

The decision to stop pumping was due to a concern about the water quality level and the amount of algae.

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