The Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership on Thursday hosted a presentation on the economics of flood prevention, from the Dutch perspective, at Lakewood Yacht Club.
BAHEP President Bob Mitchell welcomed invited guests and elected officials. Listen
BAHEP Special Projects Executive Director Dan Seal introduced Dale Morris, senior economist with the of the Royal Netherlands Embassy. Listen
“There perhaps is no other more important single issue facing our region today than finding effective storm surge suppression solutions,” Seal said. “Those communities that figure it out are going to win. Those that don’t, will not.”
“The Dutch are moving from flood resistance to flood accommodation in a lot of ways,” Morris said. “Because of the rising seas the Dutch are learning how to live with water.” Listen
The featured speaker was Frederik Huizinga of the Dutch Central Planning Bureau, who discussed the cost benefit analysis of storm surge protection. Listen
“I’m an economist, not an engineer,” he said at the beginning of his speech which reviewed several projects in Holland, concluding with an appeal for cooperation. “The economic side is very important. The technology side is very important. So, let these sides work together. That’s what is happening in Holland.”
Huizinga added that climate change makes flood protection a common international issue.
“The Dutch have had an early start on flood protection and at this point we are very good at it,” he said. “But at this point we are facing a common international issue - climate change, everywhere.”