Across Texas, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and Texas A&M AgriLife Research address local needs related to everything from mitigating drought impacts to enhancing food security to improving human health outcomes through education, outreach and research activities. To help support AgriLife’s mission, Texas Water Resources Institute (TWRI) has been tasked with leading the development of future water resources programs and activities in the Dallas-Fort Worth region, with the Texas A&M AgriLife Center at Dallas serving as the coordination hub for the region.
All of the regional Texas A&M University System entities — Tarleton State University, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, Texas A&M-Commerce, Texas A&M AgriLife Center at Stephenville, Texas A&M University School of Law and the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station regional divisions — will be partners in the Dallas-Fort Worth coordination hub.
“By coordinating with the Dallas-Fort Worth regional entities, we are developing an inventory of ongoing water resources program activities and will use this information to plan future water resource research and extension programs across the region,” said Dr. John Tracy, TWRI Director.
“The new TWRI program will develop water research, extension and education programs related to regional priorities such as resilient water resource management and the transition from rural to urban environments.”
Current Dallas Center initiatives hinge on improving water and land resources, urban agriculture and forestry and healthy living for all Texans.
The Dallas Center is the home of Water University, which offers numerous resources related to water conservation and management. Water University resources like the ULandscapeIt tool, plant database and irrigation best management practices can help Texans create and maintain their own water efficient landscapes. Water University also offers a variety of courses on water efficiency and water quality protection practices both locally and across Texas.
The Dallas Center also develops innovative approaches to address water quantity and quality issues through its urban ecological engineering program. Green infrastructure studies at the Dallas Center, such as green roofs and permeable pavement, mimic natural processes and help keep urban water healthy and safe.
The Dallas Center's turfgrass breeding program works alongside a range of partners to produce new, drought-tolerant, resource-efficient turfgrass varieties for sustainable urban living across Texas and the United States.
In addition to leading water resources programs, TWRI will coordinate with the Dallas Center’s urban agriculture and forestry and healthy living initiatives to better serve the Dallas-Fort Worth region.
“Building off these efforts at the Dallas Center, we will better align with the other regional entities to ensure we are indeed targeting and addressing the pressing water issues for the region,” Tracy said.
The Dallas Center will serve as the water resource information and activity hub that regional partners and stakeholders can turn to when in need of information and education. The Dallas-Fort Worth region serves as a living lab, and knowledge generated from the Dallas hub can be used to address issues across Texas, the nation and the world.
“We look forward to further building our water partnerships across the region and helping to address the water challenges faced by this rapidly growing area,” Tracy said.