Water quality training to be presented Feb. 15 in Palacios

Focus will be Carancahua Bay, Tres Palacios watersheds

Contacts: Michael Schramm, 979-458-9191, michael.schramm@ag.tamu.edu

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

PALACIOS – A Texas Watershed Steward workshop on water quality related to the Carancahua Bay and Tres Palacios watersheds will be held from 1-5 p.m. Feb. 15 at the First United Methodist Church, 209 Lucas Ave., Palacios.

The workshop is presented by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board in cooperation with the Texas Water Resources Institute, or TWRI.

It is free and open to anyone interested in improving water quality in the region. Participants are encouraged to preregister at the Texas Watershed Steward website, https://tws.tamu.edu..

“This training is designed to help watershed residents improve and protect their water resources by becoming involved in local watershed protection and management activities,” said Michael Kuitu, College Station, AgriLife Extension program specialist and coordinator for the Texas Watershed Steward program.

The Texas Watershed Steward program will present a workshop focused on the Tres Palacios and Carancahua watershed areas Feb. 15 in Palacios. (Texas Watershed Steward photo)

Kuitu said the workshop will include an overview of water quality and watershed management in Texas, but will primarily focus on area water quality, including current efforts to help improve and protect Carancahua Bay and the Tres Palacios creek and bay.  

“The supportive role Carancahua Bay and the Tres Palacios play in regards to regional wildlife habitat, agriculture, fishing and recreation is vital. They are truly important water resources,” said Michael Schramm, TWRI research associate, College Station.

“Tres Palacios and Carancahua bays capture runoff from more than 589 square miles of Jackson, Matagorda, Wharton and Calhoun counties before reaching Matagorda Bay,” said TWRI principal investigator Allen Berthold, College Station. “Currently, Tres Palacios Creek and Carancahua Bay are considered impaired by the state of Texas. However, local stakeholders are working to improve water quality through the Tres Palacios Creek Watershed Protection Plan and the Carancahua Bay Watershed Protection Plan.”

Schramm said the training will include a discussion of watershed systems, types and sources of water pollution, and ways to improve and protect water quality. There also will be a group discussion on community-driven watershed protection and management.

Attendees 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 advisors, 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, one laws and regulations and two 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.

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

The Texas Watershed Steward program is funded through a Clean Water Act nonpoint source grant from the Texas State Soil and Water 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, mkuitu@tamu.edu.

For information on watershed protection efforts for the Carancahua Bay and Tres Palacios watersheds, contact Schramm at 979-458-9191, michael.schramm@ag.tamu.edu.



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