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North Central Chapter

Sustainability at DFW Airport, North Central Chapter Meeting – Aug 3

August 3, 2023 @ 6:30 pm 8:00 pm

Speaker: Sarah Ziomek

Fort Worth Botanic Gardens in the Rose Room

3220 Botanic Garden Blvd, Fort Worth, Texas 76107

6:15 pm Socializing & snacks 
6:30 pm Business meeting and announcements
The presentation will follow our business meeting.

This meeting is hybrid; in person with a virtual Zoom option.

Register in advance for the Zoom meeting:
https://npsot-org.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAkcemurj8tG9DucyK4JODmWo4OE_3HMPTW

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Learn more about the First Carbon Neutral Airport in the Americas

The mission of DFW Airport’s Environmental Affairs & Sustainability Department is to protect people and protect the environment. Enterprise Sustainability Program Manager at DFW airport, Sarah Ziomek, will provide an overview of the Airport’s sustainability, give us results from a recent bio diversity assessment and the airport’s goal to be “nature positive.”

Learn how it’s “north star” focus areas include: water and biodiversity to Climate Action, energy performance, and striving to become a Circular Economy.

As Enterprise Sustainability Programs Manager at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW Airport) she is responsible for developing and advancing DFW’s sustainability strategy, implementing the Airport’s roadmap to achieve net zero by 2030, overseeing the environmental grants program, and managing the zero waste program.

She supports the Airport’s strategic partnership with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) as the DFW representative for projects related to energy optimization and renewables integration for buildings and fleets.

Sarah received both the B.S. and M.S. in Environmental Science at Texas Christian University in 2012. Focusing on native plants and interning at BRIT. She’s a Certified Ecologist and has served in the capacity of environmental scientist and wetland specialist.

In her free time, Sarah enjoys spending time outdoors playing tennis, cycling, and backpacking.

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About the Region

New Braunfels, the location of our Fall 2024 Symposium, straddles both the Edwards Plateau Ecoregion and the Blackland Prairie ecoregion. Interstate 35 divides the city of New Braunfels; its path through the city closely parallels the boundary of these two ecoregions, with the Edwards Plateau on the west side and the Blackland Prairies region to the east. The Edwards Plateau area is also called the Hill Country; however, this general term covers a much larger area extending farther north. Spring-fed creeks are found throughout the region; deep limestone canyons, rivers, and lakes (reservoirs) are common. Ashe juniper is perhaps the most common woody species found throughout the region. Additional woody species include various species of oak, with live oak (Quercus fusiformis) being the most common. Sycamores (Platanus occidentalis) and bald cypress (Taxodium distichum) border waterways. This area is well known for its spring wildflower displays, though they may be viewed in spring, late summer, and fall, as well. According to Texas Parks and Wildlife, average annual rainfall in the Edwards Plateau ranges from 15 to 34 inches.

The Blackland Prairie extends from the Red River south to San Antonio, bordered on the west by the Edwards Plateau and the Cross Timbers, and on the east by the Post Oak Savannah. Annual rainfall averages 30 to 40 inches, with higher averages to the east. This region is dominated by prairie species. The most common grass species include little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) and Indian grass (Sorghastrum nutans) in the uplands and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) in the riparian areas and drainages. Common herbaceous flowering plants include salvias, penstemons, and silphiums. This area has suffered greatly from overgrazing and agricultural use. Few intact areas remain, though many of the plants can be found along county roadsides throughout the region.

Our four host chapters (New Braunfels, Lindheimer, Guadalupe, and the Hill Country chapters) are located in one or both of the ecoregions above. However, the eastern portion of Guadalupe County also falls within the Post Oak Savanna ecoregion. Annual rainfall averages 35 to 45 inches, with higher averages to the east. A wide variety of hardwood trees are found, including several species of oaks, elms, and in the Bastrop area, loblolly pine (Pinus taeda). Grasses and forbs dominate in the open savannas, with most common grass being little bluestem. Ranching, agriculture, and fire suppression have allowed woody species to encroach on the once-open savannas.

Source: Wildflowers of Texas by Michael Eason