The Texas Water Resources Institute’s Urban Riparian and Stream Restoration Program will host a workshop July 27 in San Marcos for professionals interested in conducting stream restoration projects around Central Texas.
The event will be from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Workshop presentations will be given by representatives of the Texas Water Resources Institute, TWRI, and the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service.
The morning session will be at the San Marcos Activity Center, 501 E. Hopkins St. The afternoon session will be outdoors in and along the San Marcos River to learn stream surveying techniques.
The cost is $50 and includes all training materials, a catered lunch and a certificate of completion at the end of the course.
Participants must register by contacting Alexander Neal, TWRI program specialist, Bryan-College Station, at 979-314-2351 or Alexander.Neal@ag.tamu.edu.
Participants may also register on the website at tx.ag/TWRISanMarcosReg. Attendees are encouraged to register early as the workshop is limited to 40 people.
Threats to water quality
“Riparian and stream degradation is a major threat to water quality, in-stream habitat, terrestrial wildlife, aquatic species and overall stream health,” said Fouad Jaber, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension program specialist, Dallas.
Jaber said proper management, protection and restoration of these riparian areas will improve water quality, lower in-stream temperatures, improve aquatic habitat and ultimately improve macrobenthos and fish community integrity.
“The goal of the workshop is for participants to better understand urban stream functions, impacts of development on urban streams, recognize healthy versus degraded stream systems, assess and classify a stream using the Bank Erosion Hazard Index, and comprehend differences between natural and traditional restoration techniques,” he said.
Continuing education units
Neal said participants will receive a certificate of completion and appropriate continuing education unit certificates at the conclusion of the training.
The workshop offers many types of continuing education units including seven hours for certified crop advisors, six hours for Texas floodplain managers, and six hours for Texas nutrient management planning specialists. The program may also be used for continuing education units for professional engineers.
Master Naturalists and Master Gardeners should check with their local chapter to see if the program is approved for credit for their area.
Neal said the institute can offer the workshop at a reduced cost thanks to program funding provided through a Clean Water Act nonpoint source grant administered by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
The urban riparian stream education program is managed by the Texas Water Resources Institute, part of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, AgriLife Extension and the Texas A&M University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.