The Texas Water Resources Institute (TWRI) is hosting two meetings in May for anyone interested in becoming involved in a partnership to improve and protect the mid and lower Cibolo Creek watershed.
In 2004 and still in 2014, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) listed the Lower Cibolo Creek as an impaired water body for primary contact recreation due to elevated levels of E. coli bacteria. Excessive amounts of the indicator bacteria E. coli in a water body signify an increased risk for disease-causing pathogens to be present in the water body. Both E. coli bacteria and other pathogenic organisms that may be present in Lower Cibolo Creek come from the fecal material of birds and warm-blooded mammals. The Mid and Lower Cibolo Creek watershed also has concerns for elevated levels of nitrate, total phosphorus and depressed dissolved oxygen levels, which can hinder aquatic life.
The watershed has also seen increased residential development and increased hydraulic fracturing activity associated with the Eagle Ford Shale formation. With this development, it is increasingly important to develop a plan that protects the watershed’s creeks and streams.
TWRI and the San Antonio River Authority (SARA) are working together to facilitate local stakeholders in the development of a watershed protection plan (WPP). The plan, guided by stakeholder input and the best available data and science, will identify the best management practices to achieve the water quality improvement and watershed protection goals identified by stakeholders.
In concert with the WPP, SARA will expand stormwater water quality monitoring to provide additional data to support WPP development. Water quality modeling currently being developed for the Cibolo Creek Holistic Watershed Master Plan will contribute to a better understanding of pollutant loadings within the watershed. The new data, models and information from local stakeholders will facilitate the development of an effective watershed protection plan addressing identified concerns in the watershed.
Clare Entwistle Escamilla, TWRI research specialist, provides leadership for various research and extension projects, working with university faculty, state, local and federal governments and stakeholders, to address statewide water related issues.
TR-512 Mid and Lower Cibolo Creek Watershed Protection Plan
Clare Entwistle Escamilla, Xiao Shen, Michael Schramm and Lucas Gregory
There are no upcoming events
Funding for this project was provided by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board through the State Nonpoint Source Grant Program.