COLLEGE STATION – A division of the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station has received the state’s highest environmental recognition.
The Texas Water Resources Institute has been awarded a Texas Environmental Excellence Award for a range revegetation pilot project at the Army’s Fort Hood military installation.
The Blackland Research and Extension Center at Temple, the Natural Resources Conservation Service and Fort Hood personnel were project partners.
The institute and other statewide winners will be honored at a May 10 banquet in Austin.
“We are honored to receive this award,” said Dr. Allan Jones, director of the Texas Water Resources Institute and principal investigator for the project. “It was a total team effort. Our project utilizes the extensive resources and personnel that both TWRI, the Blackland Research and Extension Center, NRCS and Fort Hood have to offer in addressing this complex issue.”
Training vehicles used for decades on 67,000 acres at Fort Hood created erosion problems, which led to sediment runoff and jeopardized water quality in nearby watersheds. To combat the problem, composted manure from dairy operations in the North Bosque River Watershed was applied to depleted training ground.
Approximately 15,000 tons of composted manure has been applied to 600 acres of rangeland. Initial results show increased vegetation and reduced erosion with no water quality issues on the affected acreage.
The project will serve as a model to treat other similarly affected areas across the state.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality recognizes environmental projects across the state which demonstrate the highest achievements in resource conservation, waste reduction and pollution prevention.