Contacts: Clare Entwistle, 210-277-0292 x205, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Fouad Jaber, 972-952-9672, Fouad.Jaber@ag.tamu.edu
THE WOODLANDS – The Texas Water Resources Institute, or TWRI, will host a workshop from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. May 15 in The Woodlands for professionals interested in conducting stream restoration projects in and around Houston.
The Urban Riparian and Stream Restoration Program program is managed by TWRI, part of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Texas A&M University.
The morning session will be at the Recreation Center at Bear Branch Park – Live Oak Room 5310 Research Forest Drive. The afternoon session will be outdoors along a branch of Upper Panther Creek, where attendees will learn stream surveying techniques.
The workshop is co-hosted locally by the Houston-Galveston Area Council, Harris County Flood Control District and AgriLife Extension in Harris County.
Clare Entwistle, research associate at TWRI’s San Antonio office, said attendees must register by May 11. Participants are encouraged to register early as the workshop is limited to 40 people.
Registration for the workshop is $100 at https://bit.ly/2HPvVRW. Cost includes all training materials, lunch and a certificate of completion at the end of the course.
“Riparian and stream degradation is a major threat to water quality, in-stream habitat, terrestrial wildlife, aquatic species and overall stream health,” said Dr. Fouad Jaber, AgriLife Extension program specialist for the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Dallas. “Proper management, protection and restoration of these riparian areas will improve water quality, lower in-stream temperatures, improve aquatic habitat and fish community integrity.”
Jaber said the goal of the workshop is for participants to better understand urban stream functions and impacts of development on urban streams.
“The workshop will show attendees how to recognize healthy versus degraded stream systems, assess and classify a stream using the Bank Erosion Hazard Index, and understand differences between natural and traditional restoration techniques,” he said.
Entwistle said TWRI is able to offer the workshop at a reduced cost thanks to program funding provided through a Clean Water Act nonpoint source grant from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Workshop presentations will be given by representatives of the participating institutions. Participants receive appropriate continuing education unit certificates at the conclusion of the training.
The workshop offers many types of continuing education units and more credits are in the process of being added. Foresters and professional loggers can receive six hours from the Society of American Foresters. It offers one unit from TWRI, seven hours for certified crop advisors, six hours for Texas Nutrient Management Planning specialists and six credits from the Texas Floodplain Management Association. The program may also be used for continuing education units for professional engineers.
Participants should check with their local Master Naturalist and Master Gardener chapters to see if the workshop is approved for their area.