Energy & Environment

Water, energy, conservation, sustainability, WTP4, pollution, oil and gas, hydraulic fracturing (fracking), recycling, and other environmental issues related to Austin and the Central Texas counties of Travis, Hays, Caldwell, Bastrop and Williamson

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

Sitting in front of the temporary shelter in Smithville on Sunday, evacuees watched rain patter across the parking lot and speculated about which roads had been closed and reopened. Some of them had been through floods before.

‘This ain’t my first flood, but this is my worse flood. I’ll tell you what,” chuckled Floyd Henderson, one of 76 evacuees saying at the Smithville Recreation Center on Sunday. 

Claire McInerny / KUT

Thousands of Texans fled their homes this weekend as Hurricane Harvey made landfall on the Texas coast Friday. Harvey has since been downgraded to a tropical storm, but coastal residents are still holed up, waiting for the storm to subside and for authorities to give them the go-ahead to return home.

Rachel Burns left her home in Palacios on Friday and checked into a hotel in Yoakum, about 80 miles north of Harvey's landfall, with her 90-year-old mother. 

Final update  Friday, 9:11 p.m.
Find future updates here.

President Donald Trump has signed a declaration of disaster for the state of Texas, allowing federal money to flow to areas affected by Hurricane Harvey.

Bastrop County Office of Emergency Management

UPDATE 8:17 a.m., Aug. 21: The Texas A&M Fire Service reports the fire is now 95 percent contained.

UPDATE 6:10 p.m.: The fire is now 90 percent contained, Texas A&M Fire Service reports. 

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

It’s estimated that 1 million plastic bottles are bought around the world every minute. A few years ago, National Parks decided to try and make a small dent in that number by banning water bottle sales on parkland. Now, the Trump administration has reversed that policy.

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