TESPA and WVWA Join Together: For the Love of Karst!
The Trinity Edwards Springs Association (TESPA) and Wimberley Valley Watershed Association (WVWA) have once again joined forces for an educational campaign to celebrate and raise awareness about the unique, fragile landscape beneath our feet – our karst and caves.
Our campaign theme jingles in with a lesson, “The water flows, through rocks and holes….” answered by the campaign name, “Deep in the Karst of Texas” — for a campaign logo that virtually sings.
“We’re excited to announce our two organizations are working together again on our shared missions—preserving and protecting our natural resources,” said Patrick Cox PhD, executive director of TESPA. “The Permian Highway Pipeline which came barreling through the Hill Country last year taught us two things, 1) karst and pipelines don’t mix, and 2) many who live in the Hill Country and drink water from our karst aquifers are not yet familiar with the term ‘karst’. So, we aim to fix that.”
What is Karst? Karst is a landscape where the bedrock has been dissolved by rainwater to form sinkholes, sinking streams, caves, springs and other characteristic features, like holes in rocks. Karst is formed when water dissolves or erodes soluble rock such as limestone, dolomite or gypsum creating underground drainage systems where surface water and groundwater systems are linked. Texas has more than 15,000 documented caves, sinkholes and springs, and more than two million Texans rely on groundwater stored in karst aquifers as their sole water supply.
“TESPA and WVWA saw immediately that the International Year of Karst and Caves was a natural fit in 2021 to highlight the sources for our water supply,” added David Baker, executive director of WVWA. “We want not only to teach what karst is, but also show why it deserves our love and investment. Humans are the beneficiaries of this remarkable landscape with springs that many have considered sacred and transformative, but we are also its greatest threat. Education and experience of karst in all its forms gives us tools to be better stewards.”
“Deep in the Karst of Texas” launches now and continues through the end of 2021. Other groups and organizations are invited to join the campaign as “Friends of Karst” and sharing karst information with their own constituencies, linking to the WVWA and TESPA karst webpages, as well as sharing via social media platforms. The Deep in the Karst campaign will also include news stories, multiple informational webinars, a cave tour or two, and a gathering for friends and supporters at a Two-Step for Karst Barn Dance in November.
We invite you to join us Deep in the Karst of Texas! Support the education campaign, share what you learn, tune in for webinars, join a field trip, meet us for the Two-Step for Karst Barn Dance, and boost education and protection efforts through a donation to the Water Protectors Fund.