This post is from the Katy Prairie Conservancy. Representatives from the Katy Prairie Conservancy (KPC), Newfield Foundation, and Duck Unlimited broke ground on a wetlands restoration project on Katy Prairie Conservancy’s land. This important project will create nearly 45 acres of wetlands in Waller County.
Among those representing the various entities were Mary Anne Piacentini, President and CEO for Katy Prairie Conservancy; Wesley Newman, Land Conservation Director for Katy Prairie Conservancy; Dolores Vasquez, Executive Director for Newfield Foundation; John Jasek, Senior Vice President – Operations for Newfield Exploration; Taylor Abshier, Biologist for Ducks Unlimited; and many others from Newfield Foundation, Newfield Exploration, Ducks Unlimited, and Katy Prairie Conservancy.
Newman noted that the wetlands restoration project is important for the wildlife in the area, providing rich habitat for resident and migratory waterfowl. But just as important is what it does for people. The EPA estimates that one wetland acre can store between 1 and 1.5 million gallons of water, helping to hold or slow floodwaters during storms.
“When restored coastal prairie and wetlands hold water, they prevent the water from travelling downstream,” says Piacentini. “In catastrophic flooding events, this time is essential. It’s the time Houstonians need for water to drain, for the sun to come out, and for flood-prone residential and commercial areas to recover. Even if waters are only held back for a day or two, this makes an enormous difference in downstream Houston.”