Conservation Matters January 2019

The Texas Land, Water and Wildlife Connection

TWRI’s Year in Review: 2018

By Sarah Richardson

TWRI’s Year in Review: 2018

For the Texas Water Resources Institute (TWRI), 2018 marked another successful year of addressing Texas water resource issues.

The institute, under the direction of Dr. John Tracy, continued achieving its programmatic missions in research, outreach and education. TWRI serves as the lead unit in the Texas A&M University System (TAMUS), including Texas A&M AgriLife, to plan, facilitate and conduct research that aids in the resolution of regional, state, national and international water issues.

“We work with Texas A&M units to promote technology transfer, dissemination of research findings and aiding in the implementation of improved technology and management practices,” Tracy said.

Through experience-based learning and continuing education, TWRI provided training to water resource professionals and stakeholders.

Throughout the year the TWRI water team participated in numerous conferences including the Texas A&M College of Law’s annual Water Law Seminar, the American Water Resources Association (AWRA)’s Transboundary Groundwater Science and Management Conference, Two Nations One Water: U.S.-Mexico Border Water Summit, the Ogallala Water Coordinated Agricultural Project (CAP)’s Ogallala Water Summit and the Texas Alliance of Groundwater Districts’ Texas Groundwater Summit.

In 2018, TWRI received $12,852,219 in grant funding to advance research in TAMUS water programs.

2018 Highlights

  • Served as lead or sub, for the fourth consecutive year, on a successful U.S. Department of Agriculture National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Water for Ag CAP grant; regions covered are the Rio Grande, Ogallala Aquifer and Gulf Coast
  • Published the Fall 2018 issue of txH2O, focused on enhanced water management across the Ogallala Aquifer
  • Organized, with the AWRA, the first Transboundary Groundwater Science and Management Conference in the United States in July 2018 in Ft. Worth
  • Partnered on successful X-Grant Proposal with Texas A&M Colleges: Geosciences, Engineering, Law and Bush School of Government and Public Service.

In 2019, Tracy said TWRI will focus on advancing signature research programs in the areas of global water management led by Dr. Rosario Sanchez, water and health initiative led by Dr. Lucas Gregory and the Southern Plains agricultural systems led by Dr. Allen Berthold.

Within these programs, Tracy said TWRI hopes to increase engagement across Texas A&M developing joint initiatives with: the Bush School for science and policy focused on global water governance; the College of Geosciences by forwarding initiatives on socio-technological analysis and design approaches that enhance water security (X-Grant) and by increasing collaboration with the SeaGrant Program; and with the Texas A&M School of Public Health and Texas A&M Health Science Center to advance initiatives focused on the intersection of water and health.

“It’s been an exciting year for water in Texas and TWRI is looking forward to collaborating with everyone in the New Year and moving forward,” Tracy said.

For more on TWRI’s and partner's recent work, read some of the top Conservation Matters stories from 2018:

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