Water quality training Jan. 26 in Brenham to focus on Mill Creek watershed

Contacts: Michael Kuitu, 979-862-4457, mkuitu@tamu.edu

Kara Matheney, 979-277-6212, kjmatheney@ag.tamu.edu

Jennifer Cary, 979-862-8070, millcreek@tamu.edu

BRENHAM – A Texas Watershed Steward workshop on water quality and management related to the Mill Creek watershed will be from 1-5 p.m. Jan. 26.

The workshop will be in the Washington County Fairgrounds Sales Facility, 1385 Old Independence Road in Brenham. It will be presented by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board.

Mill Creek. (Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo by Jennifer Cary)

“This workshop is designed to assist watershed residents improve and protect their water resources by becoming involved in Mill Creek water quality management activities,” said Michael Kuitu, AgriLife Extension program specialist and coordinator for the Texas Watershed Steward program, College Station. “The workshop, professional continuing education credits and more are free to anyone interested in protecting water quality in the region.”

Doors will open at 12:30 p.m., and a free lunch will be provided by the AgriLife Extension office Washington County to attendees who preregister for the workshop by Jan 24.

Participants are encouraged to preregister at the Texas Watershed Steward website at http://tws.tamu.edu.

A discussion on watershed systems, types and sources of water pollution, and ways to improve and protect water quality through the application of best management practices will be included in the program. There also will be a group discussion on community-driven watershed protection and management.

“The workshop will include an overview of water quality and watershed management in Texas, but will focus primarily on local water quality initiatives, including current efforts to help improve and protect the Mill Creek watershed,” said Kara Matheney, AgriLife Extension agent,  Washington County. “It will address local water resources but will be applicable to all waters in the region.”

“The Mill Creek watershed provides water for wildlife habitat and supports agricultural and recreational activities.” said Jennifer Cary, AgriLife Extension program specialist and watershed coordinator for Mill Creek, College Station. “It truly is an important water resource and tributary of the Brazos River.”

Attendees of the workshop will receive a copy of the Texas Watershed Steward Handbook and a certificate of completion. The Texas Watershed Steward program offers four continuing education units in soil and water management for certified crop advisers, four units for professional engineers and certified planners, four credits for certified teachers, and two credits for nutrient management specialists. A total of four professional development hours are available for professional geoscientists.

In addition, three general continuing education units are offered for Texas Department of Agriculture pesticide license holders, and four for certified landscape architects. Four continuing education credits are provided to certified floodplain managers. Four continuing education credits are also offered for each of the following Texas Commission on Environmental Quality occupational licensees: wastewater system operators, public water system operators, on-site sewage facility installers, and landscape irrigators. Master Gardeners and Master Naturalists may also earn continuing education credits.

“Participating in the Texas Watershed Steward program is a great opportunity to get involved and make a difference in your watershed,” Matheney said.

The Texas Watershed Steward program is funded through a Clean Water Act nonpoint source grant from the conservation board and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

For more information on the Texas Watershed Steward program and to preregister, go to the website or contact Kuitu at 979-862-4457 or mkuitu@tamu.edu; or Matheney at 979-277-6212 or kjmatheney@ag.tamu.edu.

For information on watershed protection efforts for the Mill Creek watershed, contact Cary at 979-862-8070 or millcreek@tamu.edu.

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