WELCOME!!! Like this author, the Texas Water Solutions blog has experienced a few changes, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t tons of water issues to discuss so I am excited to announce that the blog is back with a new address and some new voices. Before we get started on all the great topics we will be posting about, I thought it might be helpful to have a little background on our new locale.
How did we get here?
After the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) discontinued much of its water work in Texas, there was a need to find a new house. The Texas Living Waters (TLW) project was a natural fit. Originally started in 2001, the purpose of TLW was to join the water forces of EDF, the Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club (SC) and the National Wildlife Federation (NWF). The group had some great victories including passage of SB 3 environmental flows legislation, dedication of a portion of City of Houston wastewater return flows to Galveston Bay and has done loads of work for conservation policies. Although EDF is no longer participating, the collaboration is still going strong through the work of SC and NWF as well as their regional partner, the Galveston Bay Foundation. As for me, I am now teaching and writing about many of these issues at St. Mary’s Law School and still advocating whenever possible. I first became acquainted with TLW when EDF was still a partner so I was super happy to have the opportunity to rejoin forces with great colleagues and revive the blog.
The purpose of the blog is the same. We are hoping to educate the general public and decision-makers on Texas current water issues. We want to shape Texas’ water policies to provide enough water for Texans and the state’s economy without depleting long-term water supplies or damaging the environment. If you were a reader of the previous blog, you are probably already familiar with the topic areas covered by these groups, but if not – let’s take a look. Posts on the blog will be in one (or more) of five categories: Groundwater, State Water Planning, Environmental Flows, Drought and Water Conservation. Some of these categories have a lot included in them. For example, on the previous blog we talked a lot about the energy-water nexus – that would naturally fall both under State Water Planning and Conservation. Not to worry, if it is important to Texas’ water future – you will find it here.
Meet the New Faces!
In addition to myself, there are some new authors on the blog. Some of them may look familiar as frequent guest bloggers from the previous blog.
Jennifer Ellis is Senior Project Coordinator for NWF’s TLW project. While she has worked on lots of water issues, she is incredibly knowledgeable on Texas’ challenging and complicated environmental flows process.
Jennifer Walker is Water Resources Coordinator at the SC. Like Jennifer E, Jennifer W. has been in the water advocacy biz for over a decade and knows a lot about a lot of things, but she has an expertise in groundwater and sustainable water management including conservation.
You will get to know everyone better once we get going and we are looking forward to some great guest bloggers as well. Please feel free to email any of us, send us a message from the website or ask questions as we go along. We welcome dialog.
I promise we have a lot of great things coming your way. Please add your e-mail to our subscription list so we can alert you to any new posts. First and foremost, we will focus on the continuing drought (no we haven’t had enough rain to be done with that) and review the exciting legislative session. We also invite you to get additional information on TLW’s shiny new website, which is full of recent developments, upcoming events and issue papers. See you soon!!!