Picture this: a hurricane hundreds of miles wide, winds in excess of 100 miles per hour, thousands killed, hundreds of homes erased from the landscape, air service and one of the world’s busiest ports shut down for weeks – if not longer. That is what’s projected should a monster storm hit the Texas Gulf coast. If Hurricane Matthew were to hit our shores, we are ill-prepared at the moment.
Public officials, economists and meteorologists have been warning us for a long time about the need to protect the coastline from such natural disasters, and yet so far the potential solution, a coastal barrier, has yet to happen. Texas’ coasts are still vulnerable.
State Rep. Joe Deshotel is co-chair of the legislative committee studying the coastal barrier effort, which is seriously looking into the matter. Of the range of plans lawmakers are considering, Deshotel says the best one is building a coastal spine – a levy along the coastline with gates that can be closed to protect Galveston Bay, which would cost $11-15 billion.
What you’ll hear in this segment:
– How the legislature would get funding for the project
– What the urgency is for a plan like this