TEMPLE - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has reviewed and accepted the Upper Llano River Watershed Protection Plan (WPP) as meeting the agency’s guidelines for watershed-based plans. The Upper Llano WPP outlines a strategy to implement management measures that will reduce nonpoint source pollution in the watershed.
The Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board (TSSWCB) partnered with local soil and water conservation districts (SWCDs), groundwater conservation districts, Texas Tech University Center at Junction, Texas Water Resource Institute (TWRI), and the South Llano Watershed Alliance to develop the Upper Llano River WPP to protect the Upper Llano River which is currently a healthy ecosystem supporting a variety of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems.
The plan and its components provide solutions to potential issues arising from land fragmentation, woody vegetation, aquatic invasive species, groundwater availability, and aquifer contamination to ensure preservation of this watershed. Any source of contamination could potentially impact a range of ecological and economic resources even beyond the watershed itself.
"The approval of this watershed protection plan comes after a great deal of work and collaboration from local residents and stakeholders. The goal is to protect water quality in the river by encouraging stakeholders to implement management measures identified in the plan," said Marty H. Graham, Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board Member and landowner in the Upper Llano River Watershed.
The Upper Llano River, which includes the North and South Llano rivers and the springs that feed them, support several unique plant and animal communities. They also provide constant flows downstream to the Llano and Colorado rivers, Lake Lyndon B. Johnson (LBJ) and other Highland Lakes, which are especially critical during times of drought. The WPP will play an integral role for ensuring an abundance of clean and healthy water for the future.
More information on the Upper Llano River Watershed Protection Plan is available at http://www.llanoriver.org/ or by contacting Jana Lloyd at (254) 773-2250 ext. 224 or jlloyd [at] tsswcb [dot] texas [dot] gov.
This effort was funded through a Clean Water Act Section 319(h) grant provided by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board and the U.S Environmental Protection Agency.