The Texas Water Development Board announced they are conducting an online survey now through September 29 to collect input on the use of nature-based solutions to mitigate flood risk as part of the effort to address flood issues across the state. Responses will be used to help develop a guidance manual for communities seeking to implement these projects. According to the TWDB, nature-based solutions are broad, ranging from detention and retention ponds to preservation of natural features, such as floodplains and wetlands, or may even include roadside ditches with nature-based components. Sometimes, projects designed to improve water quality or intended to provide other environmental benefits can also work to mitigate flooding. The TWDB’s survey is intended to capture examples of projects and programs using nature-based solutions with flood mitigation benefits to learn about the solutions being implemented in the varying ecoregions of Texas. The goal of the guidance manual is to make practical case studies of projects, incentive program concepts, and regulatory templates available to community officials, decision-makers, and other practitioners who are interested in nature-based solutions as alternatives or additional components of traditional flood infrastructure. The agency aims to:

1) share data and information about the benefits of implementing these nature-based solutions that could then empower communities to adopt them;

2) provide tools, research, case studies, incentive program concepts, and example ordinances—anything that a community may use as a resource if it’s interested in pursuing these solutions; and

3) share details about funding opportunities and grant applications for these types of projects.