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Drought conditions have continued to intensify and expand across portions of the West, High Plains, Midwest, and the South. Fueled by dry conditions and Santa Ana winds, there was an explosive growth of the fires that started in Southern California the first week of December. In contrast, some snow fell across the South and Southeast, including southern Texas eastward into Georgia. There were a few areas where drought conditions improved, mainly in the far southern areas where there...

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TagsCurrent Drought Conditions, Drought Index, Drought Maps, Drought Monitor, Drought Response, Drought Restrictions, Groundwater, Historical Data, reservoir levels, streamflow,

Photo courtesy of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

Zebra mussels are back in the news, and as they spread farther into North Texas, Freese and Nichols is helping to address the threat posed by the invasive species.

(Star-Telegram article: Officials bracing for spread of zebra mussels​)

So far, the major impact of zebra mussels on our clients has been that North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) has lost access to water supply from Lake Texoma because of...

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Tagsstreamflow, reservoir levels, Historical Data, Groundwater, Drought Restrictions, Drought Response, Drought Monitor, Drought Maps, Drought Index, Current Drought Conditions,

Written by Keeley Kirksey, P.E. and Rachel Ickert, P.E.

Introduction

Although drought conditions across most of Texas have improved since October of 2011, the June 19 U.S. Drought Monitor indicates that only 10 percent of the state is drought-free. This spring, reservoir levels increased significantly in many areas of the state, which has caused some Texans to resort back to a state of apathy in the hydro-illogic cycle (discussed in the...

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Tagswater transmission, water supply, fast-track project, environment, Drought Response,

When much-needed rains soaked many parts of the state, residents and media outlets cheered, “The drought has broken!” The rains were a relief to those areas; however, much of the state remains in a serious drought, and many municipalities in other areas are cautiously maintaining their Stage I, Stage II, or even Stage III drought status.

Fortunately, those municipalities have avoided falling prey to the “hydro-illogical” cycle, where apathy follows rain, and then concern follows a drought, which leads to panic after the drought continues.

DroughtSensewill begin to...

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TagsDrought Contingency, Drought Response, Sustainability, Drought Restrictions, water supply,

Over the last year, Freese and Nichols has hosted half-day and one-hour seminars to discuss Texas' drought with recommendations on how clients can respond. Questions included: How does the Texas drought affect our clients? How does the 2011 drought compare to previous droughts? How long will the drought last? What can our clients do in response to the drought?  Click here to view the February 2012 presentation for the one-hour Freese and Nichols drought seminar.  Click...

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TagsHistorical Drought Information, Drought Response, Drought Outlook, historical drought maps, Drought Index, Current Drought Conditions, Drought Monitor, Forecasts, Water Rights, fast-track project, Climate, La Nina, Drought Contingency,

For much of Texas, the drought of 2011 is the most severe one-year drought on record.  Climatologists predict the drought will continue for the foreseeable future. Additionally, Texas continues to grow rapidly in many metropolitan areas.  These and other factors put pressure on existing water supplies to meet demands. Water Resources Project Manager and Freese and Nichols Principal Rusty Gibson addressed these factors in a recent paper prepared for the American Society of Civil...

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Tagswater transmission, water supply, permitting, fast-track project, environment, Drought Response, construction,

By Guest Author – Brad B. Castleberry, Principal; Lloyd Gosselink Attorneys and Counselors

In addition to drought contingency plans, some owners should consider the stability of their water supplies, especially if the source is surface water. Surface water rights in Texas are governed by the prior appropriation doctrine, which means "first in time, first in right." Drought conditions in 2011 resulted in priority calls in several Texas river basins.  

TCEQ held a stakeholder meeting in August 2011 and a public hearing in December 2011 to discuss implementation...

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TagsWater Rights, TCEQ, Priority, Drought Response,

In response to the 2011 drought, many water providers were implementing multiple stages of their drought contingency plans for the first time. “Drought Forces Water Contingency Plans Across State,” first published last summer in Freese and Nichols' AquAlert, discusses specific considerations for water providers in developing and implementing a drought contingency plan. It's found on page 2 of the Summer 2011 issue of aquALERT.

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TagsTCEQ, Drought Response, Drought Contingency,