Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, working in collaboration with area residents, the Clear Lake City Water Authority, and Exploration Green Conservancy, have been collaborating to transform an about-to-be paved golf course into a new kind of nature park that provides recreation while protecting thousands of homes from flooding caused by natural disasters such as Hurricane Harvey.
Additionally, AgriLife Extension is participating in a statewide effort to help Texans recover from Hurricane Harvey. Last September, Gov. Greg Abbott asked Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp to coordinate state and local recovery efforts of the Governor’s Commission to Rebuild Texas. Sharp then tasked employees of AgriLife Extension with serving as his local liaisons with the impacted communities, reporting on local recovery needs and providing a pipeline for information and recovery resources.
Dr. Monty Dozier, AgriLife Extension special assistant for Rebuild Texas, said the agency will continue to be involved in a variety of recovery efforts throughout the Rebuild Texas effort. “AgriLife Extension personnel will continue to serve as liaisons between local jurisdictions and state and federal agencies,” he said. “And we will help communities recover from Harvey and work to be more resilient for future events. Our involvement in the Exploration Green project will certainly help protect that community from flooding brought on by future storms.”
Mary Carol Edwards, AgriLife Extension program specialist with Texas A&M’s Texas Community Watershed Partners, is a Houston native who grew up in the Clear Lake area and has been working on the stormwater wetlands portion of Exploration Green.
“This will be one of the largest stormwater wetlands initiatives ever undertaken by the TCWP, with nearly 40 acres of wetlands when all five phases of the initiative are completed,” she said.
According to the Clear Lake City Water Authority, the project’s five detention ponds are expected to help keep potentially 2,000 area homes from flooding through a collective water-holding capacity of a half-billion gallons, providing protection against a significant amount of rainfall and runoff.
Hurricane season starts June 1. Prepare now.
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