Executive Intelligence Review


Big Texas Coastal Storm Protection Project Has Gotten a Boost

Oct. 29, 2018 (EIRNS)—President Donald Trump signed his first infrastructure bill last week, the “America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018” which directed the Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to accelerate its approvals of water infrastructure, and to provide them in five-year plans to Congress every year.

Given that this act’s language was in negotiation for more than a year, it may have influenced the fact that on Oct. 26, the Army Corps completed its three-year-long study of the “Ike Dike” and designated it as the preferred method of protecting the Texas Gulf Coast from hurricanes and storm surge. Talked about since Hurricane Ike a decade ago, the Ike Dike is a $30 billion project. It will be 70 miles of levees and seagates. According to Houston Chronicle:

“At the entrance of Galveston Bay, a system of storm surge gates would be constructed to accommodate navigation to the ports of Galveston, Texas City and Houston. A large navigation gate would also be placed along the Houston Ship Channel. These gates would only close during storm events, and are modeled after similar gates in London on the River Thames and on the coast of the Netherlands. A ‘ring levee’ would also be placed around Galveston to protect the backside of the island, a densely populated area, from surge and flood waters.”

This doesn’t start the project. They now must hold public hearings over extended period—then seek funds from Congress.

Bloomberg Oct. 29 ran an article, “Democrats Eye Push for Infrastructure Plan If They Retake the House,” whose substance was that

“Rep. Peter DeFazio, who’s in line to become chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, has said Democrats would seek a spending measure for roads, bridges and other public works if they take power.”

DeFazio has been meeting with White House aides. He is quoted as saying, “It’s well past time for Congress and the Trump Administration to get serious about our infrastructure needs.” Trump told Fox Business News in an interview Oct. 17, “Infrastructure is going to be starting after the midterms and we think that is going to be an easy one.”

Neither side has a funding concept. In fact—for large and important projects—that will only come from cooperating with major Eurasian economic powers now building such projects.