2019 - Houston Wilderness RCP Key Goals Facilitation Forums
June (tbd) RCP Planning Group Implementation Forum
September (tbd) Science & Academic (Key Goals) Forum
August (tbd) Regional Governmental Officials Forum
November (tbd) HW/HGAC Joint Regional Resilience Forum
Gulf-Houston Regional Conservation Plan (Gulf-Houston RCP) is a long-term collaborative of environmental, business, and governmental entities working together to implement an ecosystem resilience plan for the Eight-County Gulf-Houston region. The 8 counties in the RCP are: Brazoria, Chambers, Galveston, Fort Bend, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery and Waller County
In addition to providing the only online interactive database of all targeted nature-based infrastructure projects taking place in the region, the three key goals of the RCP include: (1) Increasing the current 9.7% in protected/preserved land in the eight-county region to 24% of land coverage by 2040, (2) Increasing and supporting the region-wide land management efforts to install nature-based stabilization techniques, such as low-impact development, living shorelines, and bioswales, to 50% of land coverage by 2040, and (3) providing research and advocacy for an increase of 0.4% annually in air quality offsets through carbon absorption in native soils, plants, trees, and oyster reefs throughout the eight county region.
Thousands of individuals, hundreds of businesses and every government agency in this 8-county region is a part of the Gulf-Houston RCP data collection and achievement goals in one or more ways. For example, various organizations are part of the 9.7% in current or future protected/preserved land in the 8-county region through creation and maintenance of parks, natural areas, riparian corridors, detention basins, reservoirs, etc). Individuals and organizations who work or live in an area that have installed nature-based stabilization techniques on their property through green infrastructure technieques, bioswales, or other native plantings are contributing to nature-based community resilience. And, individuals, organizations and institutions that are adding more native trees, plants and living shorelines to our region are engaging in carbon sequestration annually.
Gulf-Houston Rcp working list of projects -
interactive project Map
Click on the individual icons to learn more about the project.
An ecosystem continuity and connectivity plan for the Gulf-Houston Region
The Gulf-Houston Regional Conservation Plan (Gulf-Houston RCP) is a long-term collaborative of environmental, business and governmental entities in the eight-county Gulf-Houston Region working together to promote a multiple ecosystem continuity and connectivity plan that provides (1) the 24% by 2040 Land-Use Strategy (launching Spring 2018); (2) a 4-part Action Agenda for enhanced ecosystem services; (3) environmental data analytics and analysis on the ecological aspects of the 8-county region - including comprehensive land-use, the benefits of the myriad of ecosystem services to residents, businesses, and wildlife, and targeted environmental needs and GIS-based planning efforts; (4) a Working List of all environmental-based projects in the RCP coverage area; and (5) coordinated support for various funding strategies at all levels. The RCP Working List of Projects is comprised of every known environment-based project in need of full or partial funding in the 8-county region. The RCP includes four key initiatives encompassing environmental projects around the region, divided into two phases based on land acquisition and easements or restoration and enhancements.
Learn more about the partners on this project here.
The following maps outline the key areas and projects targeted in Phases 1 and 2 of the Regional Conservation Plan
The Gulf-Houston Regional Conservation Plan highlights four (4) ecologically significant areas (“Eco-Areas”) and contains two phases. The following four (4) Initiatives are part of the Gulf-Houston RCP - Phase One and, when fully funded, will include 280,000 acres of land acquisition, 15,000 acres in land easements and restoration, and development of over 250 recreational trail miles:
Riparian Corridor Protection Initiative – protect riparian corridor within the nearly 50 watersheds that feed into Galveston Bay, including the Brazos, San Jacinto and Lower Trinity rivers.
Headwater to Baywater Initiative - connecting bayous and the bay in the San Jacinto River watershed through riparian protection and restoration.
Lower Trinity River Project - connecting ecotourism to riparian conservation by protecting riparian corridors along the Lower Trinity River in the five counties which encompass the LTR watershed leading towards Galveston Bay.
Columbia Brazos Corridor Project - protecting and enhancing riparian habitat along the Brazos River and Columbia Bottomlands Corridor.
Prairie Conservation Initiative – restoration and preservation of tens of thousands of acres of coastal prairie remnants that comprise the One Prairie throughout the eight counties in the RCP.
Galveston Bay Habitat Acquisition & Easements Initiative - restoring habitat (coastal wetlands, bottomlands and estuaries) from multiple counties leading into the Bay & Gulf Coast, including Galveston Island and other nearby barrier islands.
Galveston Bay Oyster Reefs & Migratory Bird Habitat Initiative - restoration, creation and preservation of Galveston Bay oyster reefs, inland rookery islands and other bird habitat within the lower Galveston Bay watershed.
Gulf-Houston Monarch Flyway Strategy - is a collaborative effort focused on the preservation and creation of monarch butterfly and other pollinator habitat in the region.
Click the links below to access key documents about the plan:
Recent News for Hurricane Harvey Funding in the 8-County Region
Harris County Bond Program:
On August 25, 2018, Harris County voters approved the $2.5 billion Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) bond for flood risk reduction projects throughout the county.
The Harris County Bond Program Projects List consists of 50% - 75% nature-based infrastructure projects. This will add significantly to the 24% by 2040 Strategy.
For more information on the Harris County Bond Program see links below:
Fort Bend County:
Fort Bend County Commissioners voted on May 1st to look for a firm to study how water flows across the jurisdiction and to consider how future development could affect that. The county plans to use the information from the study to shape a potential $250 million bond election.
May 11, 2018, Houston Chronicle: After Harvey, Fort Bend County residents push for action to prevent future flooding
8-County RCP Area:
1. Click here for the H-GAC draft Method of Distribution for the Hurricane Harvey Community Development Block Grant Disaster Funds
2. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announces nearly $5 billion in funding for nature-based projects including levees for coastal spine and flood damage reduction projects in partnership with HCFCD. See U.S. Army Corps of Engineers press release below for more information.
3. The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) in partnership with NOAA announces the National Coastal Resilience Fund. NFWF will award up to $30 million in grants to create, expand and restore natural systems in areas that will both increase protection for communities from coastal storms, sea and lake level changes, flooding, and coastal erosion and improve valuable habitats for fish and wildlife species. Full Proposal Due Date: Tuesday, August 7, 2018 11:59 PM Eastern Time. Click here to learn more.