SHOW AUDIO: https://thinkwingradio.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/kpfthd3_2013-11-13_evelyn-merz-sierra-club-re-buffalo-bayou.mp3
(The Oct. 9 edition of this show was lost. The Nov. 13 show includes updated material on the Memorial Park section of the grand scheme, plus all-new information about another project being studied in West Houston.)
Welcome to Thinkwing Radio with Mike Honig (every Wednesday from 2-3PM CT) on KPFT-HD Channel 90.1-3. One of our mottos is that you’re entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts, so we try to get our facts right.
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Houston is basically flat. It is recorded as having an elevation of about 43 feet above sea level in the vicinity of downtown. The Houston Heights are about 25 feet higher than that. This makes for slow runoff when there are sudden inflows of water, whether from local rain, or water coming from higher up in the regional watershed. Especially since the 1930s, the channeling of water – what is often called flood control – has been a significant part of life in metro-Houston. Houston has subsided, expanded and developed, more water-permeable land has been paved over, and paved roads have effectively turned into either channels or basins for water looking for a place to go.
This has created an endless need for flood control infrastructure and for human meddling with the local bayous; nature’s original means of draining this region of Texas.
My guest is Evelyn Merz of the Houston Regional Group of the Sierra Club. She is a past chair of the group and is currently the Conservation Chair. At the state-wide level of the Sierra Club, she works on state park issues and non-game wildlife. Locally, Evelyn has worked on bayou issues for about 20 years and is currently coordinating the Houston Sierra Club response to Harris County Flood Control District’s Memorial Park Demonstration Plan for Buffalo Bayou.
SOURCES: Continue reading