Houston Environmental News Update August 15, 2018

August 25 marks the one-year anniversary of the landfall of Hurricane Harvey, believed to be the most devastating storm event, in terms of monetary damages, in U.S. history.

The hurricane, which first caused heavy damage along Texas’s central Gulf coast and then central Texas, then went on to park itself over the greater Houston-Galveston region over several days, unleashing unprecedented amounts of rainfall and creating enormous flooding. Even more sadly, several people lost their lives.

With such a momentous anniversary upon us, it’s no wonder that we will be “inundated” with media stories, opinion pieces, and public events geared around the storm.

As just one example, Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy and the Severe Storm Prediction, Education, and Evacuation from Disaster (SSPEED) Center recently released a joint report, co-authored by Jim Blackburn and Phillip Bedient, called “Houston a Year after Harvey: Where We Are and Where We Need To Be.”

Blackburn, a noted environmental attorney, will be the featured speaker at a related Baker Institute event on August 30 called “Houston a Year After Harvey: Ongoing Flooding Challenges and Proposed Solutions.”

Other public events include:

And, of course, if you live in Harris County, you have the opportunity to vote in a $2.5 Billion flood control bond election on August 25, 2018, or vote early between now and August 21, 2018. Find out more at Harrisvotes.com. More info below.

If you know of any we’ve missed, please send us a note at [email protected]

Today’s banner image courtesy Glassock School of Continuing Studies at Rice University.

CEC NOTES


Houston Green Film Series

On September 19, we will be showing Dirt Rich, another excellent film, this time about the connection between regenerative agriculture and climate change.

In October, we’ll host “Wild About Houston, A Green Film Festival,” to showcase local short films telling environmental stories. Let us know if you have a film to submit!

Mark your calendar for January 30 & 31, 2019, when we’ll be hosting the Wild & Scenic Film Festival On Tour.


CEC Seeks Board & Committee Members
The CEC is currently recruiting volunteers to serve on our 2019 Board of Directors and on board committees (programs, publications, membership, governance, finance, and development). Our Governance Committee will be hosting informational open houses for potential board members September 24 and October 22, 2018. If you are interested, please send an email with your résumé to [email protected]


Scroll down to read notes from our member organizations and the community, or view the emailed version of the newsletter, which includes a green job listing.

COALITION & COMMUNITY NOTES

Harris County Commissioners Court Agenda – 08/14/18

The Harris County Commissioners Court Agenda considered the following agenda item at the August 14, 2018, meeting. The agenda included:

Recommendations from the county engineer that the court approve certain projects, decrees of public necessity and convenience, acquisition of specific properties, and authorizing eminent domain if necessary:

  • 245 tracts for the Hurricane Harvey Hazard Mitigation Grant Program Disaster recovery project in all precincts for the flood control district
  • 2 tracts Red Bluff Road evacuation route project in Precinct 2
  • 2 tracts for Cypress Greenway in Precinct 4.

Recommendations that the County Judge execute amendments and partnership agreements with:

  • Costello, Inc., in the amount of $329,119 for engineering services for improvements to the Brays Bayou pedestrian bike bridge near Stella Link and Glen Harbor in Precinct 1.
  • LJA Engineering, Inc., in the amount of $304,790 for engineering services for improvements to the Cypress Creek Greenway north and south hike and bike trails at the SH-249 underpass in Precinct 4.
  • Harris County Municipal Utility District No. 423 for the submerged storm sewer system agreement serving Balmoral, Section 15 in Precinct 2.
  • Harris County Municipal Utility District No. 489 for the submerged storm sewer system agreement serving Bridgeland Parkland Village, Section 19 in Precinct 3.
  • Harris County Municipal Utility District No. 489 for the submerged storm sewer system agreement serving Bridgeland Summit Point Crossing, Section 4 street dedication in Precinct 3.
  • Northwest Harris County Municipal Utility District No. 5 for the submerged storm sewer system agreement serving Copper Ridge at Indian Trails, Section 1 in Precinct 4
  • BIO/WEST, Inc., in an amount not to exceed $100,000, with a $100 retainer fee, for environmental consulting services in support of county-wide district projects

Recommendation for approval of changes in contracts with:

  • AAA Asphlat Paving Inc., for final constructions of Archbishop Fiorenza Park on North Bank Trail at Windchase Boulevard in Precinct 3, with an addition of $954 to the contract amount

Recommendation for authorization to retain financial surety, and repair and maintain infrastructure for:

  • Taylor Morrison of Texas, Inc., in the amount of $2,010 for Alder Trails, Section 9 in Precinct 3.

Continue reading

Houston Environmental News Update August 8, 2018

We’re busy getting ready for the Greater Houston Environmental Summit on Friday, so we don’t have an in-depth lead article for you today. We hope you will join us at the Summit, as it is a great event.

Eventbrite - 2018 Greater Houston Environmental Summit

The photo above is of the Attwater Prairie Chicken National Wildlife Preserve, and was provided to illustrate just one of the great talks at the Summit: Staying Resilient – Recovery of Attwater’s Prairie Chickens Post-Harvey, given by Jennifer Romero, Asst. Refuge Manager, Attwater Prairie Chicken NWR & Hannah Bailey, Curator of Birds, Houston Zoo.

In last week’s newsletter, our list of farmers markets was not complete. Here are a few more, courtesy of our readers. Thanks to all who sent these additions!

All this, just in time for “National Sneak Some Zucchini on Your Neighbors Porch Day.” (Send us an email if you are in search of a porch.)

Regardless of whether you are a zucchini fan, you’ll probably love the food at the Greater Houston Environmental Summit, catered by Pat Greer’s Kitchen. See the menu below.


CEC NOTES

Please register for CEC’s Greater Houston Environmental Summit on Friday, August 10, 2018. Buy your tickets now!

Annually, CEC hosts a networking and learning event for the extraordinary people who work at or are interested in the work of environmental organizations in the greater Houston region.

This year’s program includes:

  • Welcome by Commissioner Rodney Ellis 
  • Excellent Featured Speakers 
  • Table Talks: A cross between a breakout session and speed networking. See full descriptions of table talk hosts.
  • Exhibit tables from CEC member groups and local businesses.
  • Delicious, locally-grown food from Pat Greer’s Kitchen.
    • Continental Breakfast
      Scones from Angela’s Oven
      Coconut Chia Pudding with Granola and fresh fruit
      Tea and Coffee with all the fixins
    • Lunch
      Hibiscus Tea and Water
      Slow cooked, barbecued jackfruit and veggies
      Hoppin’ John – made with Texas: rice, black-eyed peas, and okra
      Salad – Market Mix
      Tomatoes, Cucumbers, and Basil Pesto
      Pimento Geez with Celery and Tomato Basil Kracker
      Strawberry Geezcake
      and, of course, lots of giant hugs!
  • A few surprises 🙂

We are grateful to the following sponsors:

Register at Eventbrite.


Houston Green Film Series

At the next edition of the Houston Green Film Series, on Wednesday, August 15, 2018, we’ll be showing Rodents of Unusual Size (see the trailer), a highly acclaimed film about the impact of nutria on coastal wetlands along the Gulf. (The film title might sound familiar if you are a fan of The Princess Bride.) Panelists will include Shannon Tompkins, who covers outdoor recreation and natural resource issues for the Houston Chronicle, and Linda Tschirhart-Hejl, the district supervisor for Texas A&M Agrilife Extension-Texas Wildlife Services and an expert on nuisance wildlife management. We’ll announce the other panelists next week. This film is NOT TO BE MISSED!

On September 19, we will be showing Dirt Rich, another excellent film, this time about the connection between regenerative agriculture and climate change.

In October, we’ll host “Wild About Houston, A Green Film Festival,” to showcase local short films telling environmental stories. Let us know if you have a film to submit!

Mark your calendar for January 30 & 31, when we’ll be hosting the Wild & Scenic Film Festival On Tour.


CEC Seeks Board & Committee Members

The CEC is currently recruiting volunteers to serve on our 2019 Board of Directors and on board committees (programs, publications, membership, governance, finance, and development). Our Governance Committee will be hosting informational open houses for potential board members September 24 and October 22, 2018. If you are interested, please send an email with your résumé to [email protected]


Scroll down to read notes from our member organizations and the community, or view the emailed version of the newsletter, which includes a green job listing.

COALITION & COMMUNITY NOTES