Is Water the Next Oil? Talking Texas Stormwater with Mark Wharton from Stormwater Professionals Group

“Water is gonna come at a premium, especially if you’re in the city and you don’t have a well, which most of these houses don’t have a well. They’re fed by city water, and you’re subject to whatever that cost is,” explains Mark Wharton, president of Stormwater Professionals Group. Today, Mark joins host Ty to talk about Texas stormwater and how the Lone Star state is approaching stormwater management post Hurricane Harvey. 

Mark read an article ten years ago that stated water would become the next oil, and it is still an important prospect to consider. Water is going to continually increase in value, so anyone who is relying on city water rather than having a personal well is going to be subject to constantly increasing premiums. In the city of Houston, TX, they are relying heavily on building detention basins as a stormwater management solution. These are helping to provide relief and also creating wetland areas that can be beneficial for the ecosystem. Harris County and the city of Houston also benefit from stricter post-construction inspection laws. Whereas basins in nearby Austin and San Antonio are not required to be checked for three or four years after being built, those in Houston must be inspected on a yearly basis. This is important, because it ensures proper maintenance and reduces the amount of problems that need to be addressed long term and also causes property owners to have a little more skin in the game. 

Texas has had several heavy stormwater events in recent years including the devastation of Hurricane Harvey. Rebuilding and managing the damage caused by this build up of stormwater is still a challenge of civil engineering that Texas property owners are handling today. Learn how Houston, TX is using detention basins to relieve low-lying older residential areas of stormwater build up. 

 

Quotes:

  • “We don’t want to offend the civil engineer. But you know what the reality is, is that I get calls constantly from civil engineers asking us how to skin that cat, how to provide stormwater quality. And obviously, our end user is really our customer, right? I have to look at his needs, and not necessarily engineers. Because to be candid, I’ve had conversations with engineers that went something like this, ‘what are you looking for in stormwater quality products? What are you guys looking for?’ And the answer is always the same, whatever is the easiest, right? Whatever is the easiest. I don’t know that I agree with that.” (5:23-6:17 | Mark) 
  • “The knee-jerk reaction from Harvey is to require more detention.” (10:18-10:23 | Mark)
  • “What the city is doing and the county is doing, Harris County and the city of Houston, is helping alleviate those low lying residential areas, older residential areas that need some relief, and they’re getting that relief by these detention basins that are being installed.” (12:38-12:53 | Mark)

The views expressed are that of the individual and do not represent the opinions of any companies past, present, or future.

Connect with Mark Wharton:

https://stormwaterprofessionalsgroup.com/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/mark-wharton-415ba246/


Connect with Ty

Connect with Ty on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/tygarmon/

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