Establishment of operational guidelines for Texas coastal zone management. Interim report summary.




University of Texas at Austin, Division of Natural Resources and Environment.

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University of Texas at Austin


The overall goal of this two-year interdisciplinary research project is the development and evaluation of a proposed methodology for effective management of the Texas Coastal Zone. This interim report summarizes the work concluded during the first year of the study. The first objective during the past year was the development of a systematic approach by which various proposed Coastal Zone management policies could be evaluated in terms of their economic and environmental impact. The second purpose was the establishment of operating criteria by which economic and environmental impact could be assessed. As a coordination focal point, the Coastal Bend Planning Region including metropolitan Corpus Christi and surrounding bays was chosen. A regional input-output economic model and a demographic model were developed in conjunction with a land use model for spatial allocation of projected industries and households. Water demands and residuals generation along with associated treatment and costs also were established for the region. In order to relate wastewater discharges to environmental impact, hydrodynamic and conservative and non-conservative water quality models were adapted and tested for the Corpus Christi estuarine system. Information from the entire Texas coastal Zone was compiled to evaluate the effects of projected activities and wastes of the expanding population and industrial sectors upon the various coastal land and water environments. Resource capability units were developed in quantitative terms for the Coastal Bend Planning Region from information on the geochemical, physical and biological properties which restrain or are affected by man's various activities. Particular emphasis was placed upon the establishment of water quality criteria for the maintenance of biological life in the estuaries. An application of the methodology to the cooling requirements of this region's electric power industry is being completed as a small-scale demonstration of the capability of the interdisciplinary team to integrate the above described components of the methodology and to provide realistic impact evaluation. During the study's second year the proposed integrated methodology will be assessed in greater scientific detail as regards its capability to provide economic and environmental impact. Four hypothetical management plans for the Coastal Bend Planning Region have been designed to function as tests cases for evaluation of the methodology; the assumptions associated with each of these hypothetical plans are outlined.


420 p. +map


coastal zone, coastal zone management, environmental impact, models, water quality, economics, estuaries