Archive for the 'Land/Water Plan' Category

Renewable Energy at TPWD

Wednesday, December 11th, 2019
It's getting easier to be green...

It’s getting easier to be green…

This is Passport to Texas

Texas Parks and Wildlife has been investigating renewable energy purchase options.

Through the State Energy Conservation Office there’s a group pulling together government entities to do a bulk purchase of renewable energy.

Andee Chamberlain is the Sustainability Program Manager at Texas Parks and Wildlife.

It’s really amazing our energy market in Texas, with all of the wind that is being produced, has really brought the renewable cost down. In the last contract that we negotiated, we looked at the cost of traditional energy vs renewable energy and the cost difference; about one percent. So it was negligible for us to choose renewable energy because it meets our mission.

The mission to “manage and conserve the resources of Texas for present and future generations” lends itself well to investment in renewable energy.

It makes a lot of sense for us to do that. All of the energy that we buy on the deregulated side is renewable; so that half of our sites are provided 100% renewable energy.

The bulk energy purchase contract will have a term of between ten and fifteen years.

That helps us not only support renewable energy but that helps us lock in a rate. And that’s really nice for parks to budget. Consistency is really important when your planning a park.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Sustainability at Parks and Wildlife

Tuesday, December 10th, 2019

Turning on renewable energy with Green Mountain.

This is Passport to Texas

Since 2010 Texas Parks and Wildlife has been exploring renewable energy options such as solar and wind technologies

The state Energy Conservation office offered grants to state agencies who applied to install solar. They would pay for 80% of the project and we would pay for 20%.

Andee Chamberlain is the Sustainability Program Manager at Texas Parks and Wildlife.

It was just the right timing that we were able to apply for four separate grants totaling almost four million dollars. From that, we installed solar at over 20 facilities. Their utility bills went down, and that money is going back into the parks. And, those systems just keep operating. Once they are paid off, they keep providing benefits.

The agency has also investigated state-wide utility contacts serving sites in deregulated areas. In a deregulated market, the consumer chooses the retail provider.

So, we took that out to bid and Green Mountain Energy stepped up. We applied for a grant and got a solar installation at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area.

Additional grants provided funding to install solar equipment at Sea Center Texas; one of the agencies largest energy users.

What we’d rather do is spend money making parks more energy efficient so we use less operations dollars so we can redirect that money to offering a better experience for the park user.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Gifts for the Conservation Minded

Wednesday, December 4th, 2019

Give a gift of the outdoors. [Big Bend Ranch State Park]

This is Passport to Texas

Holiday gift giving season is upon us, and if you have nature lovers on your list—the giving is easy—and twice as nice.

A seventy-dollar Texas State Parks Pass is a thoughtful gift for your outdoor enthusiast. Pass holders enjoy twelve months of unlimited visits to more than ninety state parks and historic sites. They also get discounts on camping and recreational equipment rentals. Money spent on the pass supports your Texas state parks.

For thirty dollars each, you can give the drivers on your list a conservation license plate. Twenty-two dollars from every sale goes directly to help fund conservation efforts in Texas.

Give every outdoor lover on your list access to more than a million acres of public land—with the Limited Use Permit—for the ridiculously reasonable price of twelve dollars.

Permit holders receive twelve months of access to Texas’ wildlife management areas, where they can fish, hike, bird watch, cycle, and camp.

When you give one of these gifts, you delight the receiver, and help support state parks and conservation in Texas.

Of course, you can always give the gift of yourself to those you love by spending time with them outdoors, away from the hustle and bustle of modern living—if only for a few hours.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Landowner Incentive Program

Tuesday, October 23rd, 2018

This is Passport to Texas

With more than 95% of Texas’ land in private hands, it’s crucial that landowners participate in the protection, restoration and maintenance of our state.

Texas Parks and Wildlife wants to help with the Texas Landowner Incentive Program, or LIP.

LIP’s goal is to meet the needs of private, non-federal landowners that wish to enact good conservation practices on their lands, for the benefit of healthy terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.

Landowners must apply for the program. The first step is to contact your local TPWD office and speak with a staff biologist. They will help with an ecological assessment of your land, review your goals, and provide you with information on the various incentive and assistance programs available.

LIP is a cost-share reimbursement program. Depending on the funding series, TPWD will contribute between 50% and 75% of a total project cost. The applicant is expected to contribute the balance; materials or in-kind services are acceptable match.

If together you and your biologist decide that the LIP program could help you meet your management and restoration goals, your biologist will help you to prepare and submit a project proposal packet. Find more information on the LIP program on the TPW website.

The Wildlife Restoration program supports our series, providing support for private lands initiatives.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti

Technical Guidance for Landowners

Monday, October 22nd, 2018


This is Passport to Texas

Subdivisions seemingly sprout from fields overnight, pushing wildlife to the fringes. People have to live somewhere, but so does wildlife—and wildlife was here first.

As more than 95% of Texas land is privately owned, it’s vital that landowners play an active role in conserving habitat for creatures great and small.

Texas Parks and Wildlife has dozens of biologists across the state that work with landowners to help them manage their properties for wildlife.

When thoughtfully managed, acres of “undeveloped” land support a wide variety of plant and animal communities, providing habitat for wildlife in tandem with opportunity for both consumptive and non-consumptive recreation.

Through the Private Lands and Habitat Program, landowners receive technical guidance to help them develop a wildlife management plan specific to their location and their goals; the service is free.

Find contact information for Technical Guidance Biologists or Private Lands Biologists near you on the TPW website.

The Wildlife Restoration Program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.