Story at a glance:
- Ike Dike is Texas’s proposed protection from storm surges in Houston.
- Houston could have been like Chernobyl, a toxic wasteland, if a hurricane made a direct hit, warns one expert.
- President Biden’s $2.25 trillion infrastructure package might cover the cost of building the Ike Dike.
The Ike Dike is a $26 billion coastal barrier project that Democratic lawmakers in Texas have been asking for for more than a decade.
The Ike Dike would protect the Texas Gulf Coast, specifically the Houston shoreline, from a natural disaster like a hurricane.
“What I am talking about now, what Texans have been talking about for a decade, is a plan to prevent a potential human and environmental catastrophe unlike any this country has ever seen,” Rep. Lizzie Fletcher, a Democrat from Houston, said.
She testified in support of the Ike Dike before the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, which she is a member of.
As part of President Biden's $2.25 trillion infrastructure package, some Texan Congress members are trying to push for it.
Last year, a Category 4 storm like Hurricane Laura could have turned the city of Houston into the next Chernobyl, according to one expert, if high water were to strike the Houston Ship Channel, Texas Monthly reported.
Experts say it only takes a 25-foot wall of water to be discharged on the channel to make humanitarian, economic and environmental disasters that could lead to thousands of deadly explosions, NBC News reported.
Thankfully for Texas, the hurricane missed its mark and veered off.
The report shows that $100 billion in damage and 500,000 jobs were at risk.
On April 26, 1986, the Chernobyl disaster was a nuclear accident near the No. 4 reactor in the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, near the city of Pripyat in the north of the Ukrainian SSR. The disaster is considered the worst nuclear disaster in history for the amount of money it cost and the number of lives lost. The Chernobyl disaster is one of two energy-related accidents that got rated a level 7, the maximum.
READ MORE STORIES FROM CHANGING AMERICA