Water quality training to be offered Nov. 19 in Georgetown

Lake O’ the Pines. (Texas Watershed Stewards photo)

Texas Watershed Steward program will focus on Lake Granger, San Gabriel River

A Texas Watershed Steward workshop on water quality related to Lake Granger and the San Gabriel River will be held from 8 a.m.-noon Nov. 19 in Georgetown.

The workshop will be held at the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service office for Williamson County, 100 Wilco Way. It will be presented by AgriLife Extension and the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board in cooperation with the Brazos River Authority, or BRA.

The workshop is free and open to anyone interested in improving water quality in the region, said Michael Kuitu, AgriLife Extension program specialist and coordinator for the Texas Watershed Steward program, College Station.

“It is designed to help watershed residents learn about their water resources and how they may become involved in local watershed protection and management activities,” he said.

Kuitu said participants are encouraged to preregister at the Texas Watershed Steward website.

The workshop will include a discussion on watershed systems, types and sources of water pollution. There also will be a group discussion on community-driven watershed protection and management.

“The workshop will provide an overview of water quality and watershed management in Texas with an emphasis on area water quality,” said Kate Whitney, AgriLife Extension agent for Williamson County. “It will address issues related to local water resources but will be applicable to all waters in the region.”

“The Brazos River Authority created a watershed protection plan in 2011 for Lake Granger and the San Gabriel River watersheds to help improve and protect surface water quality,” said Tiffany Morgan, BRA’s environmental and compliance manager, Waco. “Delivery of this workshop is one component of that plan. Therefore, we are inviting the public to not only learn about water quality management but also how they may become involved, including implementing science-based best management practices in their homes and at their jobs.”

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, four for certified landscape architects, certified floodplain managers, and 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,” said Whitney.

Funding for this effort is provided through a federal Clean Water Act nonpoint source grant administered by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board from the 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 Whitney at 512-943-3300.

For information on watershed protection efforts for Lake Granger and the San Gabriel River watersheds, contact Morgan at 254-761-3151.

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