TEMPLE – The Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board (TSSWCB) recently received a grant of $3,992,000 from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The grant will support TSSWCB’s Texas Nonpoint Source (NPS) Management Program which addresses water pollution caused by water runoff that carries pollutants into rivers, lakes, and other waterbodies.
Projects include implementing agricultural components of watershed protection plans for Mill Creek, Plum Creek, Double Bayou, and Arroyo Colorado. In addition, the funds will provide educational and outreach opportunities for landowners through the Texas Watershed Steward Program and Riparian and Ecosystem Education Program.
“We look forward to continuing restoration efforts in impaired watersheds with our conservation partners and local Soil and Water Conservation Districts,” said Thomas Helton, TSSWCB Texas NPS Management Program Administrator.
The federal Clean Water Act (CWA) requires states to develop a plan to protect the quality of water resources from the adverse effects of nonpoint source water pollution. NPS pollution is all water pollution that does not originate from regulated point sources. Types of regulated point sources include wastewater treatment facilities, municipal stormwater systems, and concentrated animal feeding operations. NPS pollution occurs when rainfall flows off the land, roads, buildings, and other features of the landscape. This diffuse runoff carries pollutants into drainage ditches, lakes, rivers, wetlands, bays, and aquifers.
The Texas NPS Management Program is a comprehensive strategy for addressing nonpoint source pollution across Texas, where an assessment has determined that water quality is impaired or threatened. TSSWCB implements the agricultural and silvicultural aspects of Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) and Watershed Protection Plans (WPPs) through assessment, planning, implementation, education, and research.