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Understanding and Reducing Risk: Developing impact statements, assessing risk, and determining offsite consequences for a residential neighborhood in close proximity to large, peak shaving propane facilities and their pipeline systems

Houston, Texas

Featured image for the project, Understanding and Reducing Risk:  Developing impact statements, assessing risk, and determining offsite consequences for a residential neighborhood in close proximity to large, peak shaving propane facilities and their pipeline systems

Image by Foto-RaBe from Pixabay “It’s business over bodies” (Marilyn Rayon, Southwest Crossing Community Resident and Thriving Earth Exchange Co-Leader)

The Problem 

The Southwest Crossing community of Houston, TX maintains that siting facilities for the storage of 300,000 gallons of liquified petroleum gas (LPG-propane), as well as its vaporization and transport, within 500 feet to residences constitutes a grave health and safety risk. 

Proposed Solution 

To learn more, we are working with Thriving Earth Exchange to conduct several studies using methods consistent with principles of environmental justice (UCC 1991) including: a National Environmental Policy Act Impacts Analysis and a Probabilistic Risk Assessment & Offsite Consequence Analysis. 

Community Benefits 

Reports and recommendations from these studies will inform us of the potential risks we may face as well as steps we can take if there is an accident at the storage facility.    

Our findings will also be used in the ongoing fight for environmental justice by building a strong case for potential legal actions and they will be shared with similar neighborhoods across the city and in the State of Texas.


About the Community

The Southwest Crossing Community Initiative (SWC) represents a residential neighborhood on the southwest side of Houston, TX.  There are 402 single family properties, 10 schools, 8 houses of worship, and approximately 2,000 residents.  It has thrived since the 1980s and continues to provide a beautiful and safe environment for the multiple generations that call it home.  Many of our members have worked hard to pay off their mortgages and are enjoying their retirement years.  Our community is diverse and has majority black and brown residents. 

Thriving Earth Exchange Partnership

We are working with Thriving Earth to gather information sorely needed by residents.  We want to launch a comprehensive study of the risks and impacts our community is facing as well as to learn how to mitigate those risks and prepare for a disaster. 

History of SWC Engagement with the Problem

Since 2021, when CenterPoint Energy notified us of the Lantana Point Reserve facility siting  in SWC within 500 feet of SWC homes, we met local and State elected officials, CenterPoint representatives, and Railroad Commission of Texas representatives.  We appealed to the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission to shutter and remove the facility as well as the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) officials who issue permits for these facilities.  We also developed a community website and a YouTube Channel; started an online petition and a funding campaign; and we continue to be featured on local news channels and websites. 

In 2023, with the help of State Senator Borris L. Miles and State Representative Alma Allen, we submitted five proposals to the 88th Texas Legislature calling for changes in notification rules, safety requirements, proximity to hazardous materials rules, zoning laws, and state notification rules. 


About the Project 


We will use the findings from three studies to: 

  1. Inform the residents of SWC and Southwest Houston 
  2. Help city, state and national officials to recognize and adhere to our study recommendations 
  3. Work with city, state, and national elected officials to prevent similar sitings of these types of facilities from happening in the future. 
  4. Advance legal and political actions for the relocation of Lantana Point. 


We plan to work with scientists/specialists and conduct several studies including: 

  • Impacts Analysis to understand the economic, aesthetic, social, health and environmental impacts of the facility.   
  • Probabilistic Risk Assessment & Offsite Consequence Analysis to address our safety concerns.

In the future we are interested in conducting additional studies including: 

  • Disaster Risk Reduction Study to analyze and reduce the causal factors of disaster from offsite consequences from an accident at Lantana and or Pecan Point facilities. 
  • An Emergency Management Study to prepare us in the advent of a disaster.


In addition to the Community co-Leads listed below, a cohort of 4-6 community residents will work in collaboration with scientists/specialists during the project period. Target Audiences include: 

  • Southwest Crossing Community Residents 
  • Southwest Community Residents 
  • Super Neighborhood 41 
  • Texas Southern University Bullard Center for Environmental Justice 
  • Houston Independent School District & area schools (10 schools) 
  • Area houses of worship (7) 
  • Gas filling stations (within 500 ft of Lantana Point) 
  • City & State Officials (including Houston Fire Department) 
  • CenterPoint Energy 
  • Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) 
  • Railroad Commission of Texas  
  • Granting agencies (for future funding) 
  • Legal counsel 


  • National Environmental Policy Act Impacts Analysis and Report 
  • Probabilistic Risk Assessment & Offsite Consequence Analysis and Report


Completion Date: See scientist/specialist descriptions below. The entire project will be completed by Fall 2024. 

Anticipated Community Benefits

  1. Ability to make decisions about their personal health and safety with trustworthy data collected and co-authored by the community.
  2. Applying findings to ongoing legal and political actions to protect the community and others like it.
  3. Data relevant to understanding the extent and nature of the grave risks the Lantana Point Reserve presents to residents.
  4. A knowledgebase of research processes for activists who want to launch new studies in the future to protect and advocate for the community.
  5. Generating data necessary to initiate and complete a second phase study for disaster risk reduction and emergency management.


While the overall aims of this study are to identify risks to the community as well as to explore what is necessary to keep community members as safe as possible in worst case scenarios, our top priority is to force the closure and relocation of Lantana Point.  Furthermore, we are working with our state representatives to change Texas state law to prevent these types of dangerous facilities from being built within the range of residents and workers in the future. 


Timeline and Milestones 

chart describing timelines and milestones



Project Team

Community Leads

Brittney Stredic headshot

Brittney Stredic

I am a native Houstonian and have been a proud resident of the Southwest Crossing Community for over 15 years. I’ve been blessed to grow up in this community and with my neighbors who are family to me.

My passion is within the creative arts and expression. My greatest joy comes when I can help people express themselves and navigate through challenges with an outlook of hope and resilience leading to learning, growth and fulfillment. My work comprises audio – visual technology, production, graphics and arts, print media, writing and sales.

In 2012, I studied graphic design at Texas State University – San Marcos, and in 2016 graduated with a Bachelors of Science in Advertising and Mass Communication. In 2021, I began my Masters of Clinical Mental Health Counseling at the University of Houston – Clear Lake.

My goal is to see that my community remains protected and safe from the environmentally racist and hazardous propane storage facility that has been thrust upon us. By fighting this fight and seeing it through to the win, I believe my family, my neighbors, our children and our community will have their peace restored knowing that God fights for us and is on our side.

Marilyn Rayon headshot

Marilyn Rayon 

Before retiring from FEDEX, I worked as a Sr Agent in Customer Service Escalation Resolution. Clients experiencing reoccurring issues were transferred to the Escalation desk. My job was to resolve the problem in a timely manner.

I’m originally from Michigan City, Indiana but Houston has been home for 36 years. In 1979 I earned my Bachelors in Marketing from Davenport University (formerly Detroit College of Business).  My husband (Leo Sr) and I moved to Southwest Crossing 32 years ago. We love our community. My hobbies are traveling, cooking and teaching Sunday School at my Church.

Several years ago, CenterPoint purchased land in our Neighborhood.  In May 2021 they began construction of a 300,000 gallon liquid propane gas tank facility here. As a result, in June 2021 we founded Southwest Crossing Community Initiative (SCCI); a grassroots organization. Our goal is the relocation of this dangerous Facility from our area. We fear the Tanks could experience a gas leak, fire, terrorist attack, stray bullet or projectile puncture, lightning strike, etc. Loss of life would be catastrophic. Daily I email political leaders, write to government agencies, etc. requesting their help. We are fighting for the return of safety to our homes.


Community Science Fellow

Susan Kirch headshot

Dr. Susan Kirch (she/her)

I am a science educator, molecular biologist and (now) an independent scholar.  I recently retired from New York University where I was an associate professor in the Department of Teaching and Learning.  I am new to Community Science and excited to be working with Thriving Earth Exchange and Southwest Crossing Community Initiative.  I enjoy co-authoring research projects and am interested in using my experiences to assist community members further develop catalytic and empowering projects that lead to new knowledge and viable solutions. In my work as a science educator, I taught undergraduate-level biology, microbiology, environmental science and human health and disease in the Science in Our Lives program I designed for future teachers; I prepared future teachers for teaching elementary school science and for conducting research on teaching and learning; and I led the science education specialization in the Teaching and Learning Doctoral program.

Scientist Wanted

Southwest Crossing Community Community Initiative (SWCCI) of Houston, TX is seeking multiple scientific/specialist partners (up to 3) to work with community members to develop a variety of assessments, plans and recommendations through methods that align with the Principles of Environmental Justice (UCC 1991).

Scientists/Specialists are expected to participate in one of the two studies listed below until completion.  Study duration times depend on the nature of the study (see descriptions below).

Seeking scientists/specialists who may or may not be based in Texas. Visiting the community is not required unless it is necessary for the work, but the scientists/specialist should work in collaboration with the SWCCI team.

Students who are actively working with and mentored by scientists/specialists are welcome.


Desired Skills and Qualifications for all Studies:

  • Familiarity with liquified petroleum gas (especially propane) and its storage, vaporization, and transport is essential
  • Must have experience in the study area of interest
  • Experience and desire to participate in community education, outreach, and engagement
  • Strong listening and collaboration skills
  • Willingness to connect science to local concerns
  • Commitment to environmental justice

Not only will the outcomes of these three studies help us make personal decisions about our own lives, but they will also be used to help us continue to explore various legal and political issues related to the priority.  Scientists/Specialists are not expected to commit to such activities.


Study Area 1.  National Environmental Policy Act Impacts Analysis 

Duration: Approximately 6-12 months (negotiable)

We assert that situating a peak shaving facility with 300,000 gallons of propane so close to residences is a grave health and safety risk.  SWCCI is interested in learning more about the specific nature of the intersecting impacts of the LPG-propane storage, vaporization, and transport facility on its community and its near neighbors.  In this study we are interested in economic, aesthetic, social, health and environmental impacts.

We are seeking a scientist/specialist who will work with us to address following questions as recommended by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA):

  • What are the direct impacts on SWC caused by the CenterPoint Energy peak shaving facilities (Lantana and Pecan Point)?
  • What are the indirect impacts on SWC caused by these peak shaving facilities?
  • What are the cumulative impacts on SWC caused by these peak shaving facilities?

The scientist/specialist will be able to:

  • Work with the SWCCI team who can assist with all aspects of the study including screening, scoping, assessment, monitoring, etc.
  • Generate an Impacts Analysis and Report co-authored with SWCCI


EJ IWG & NEPA Committee (2019).  Community guide to environmental justice and NEPA methods. 


Study Area 2.  Probabilistic Risk Assessment & Offsite Consequence Analysis  

Duration:  Approximately 3-5 months

No government agency has communicated with SWC residents about the risks associated with facilities like the Lantana Peak Shaving Facility (LPG-propane storage, vaporization and transport).  The community would like to know the magnitude of the adverse consequence(s) that can potentially result from any given action and the likelihood of those consequences (e.g., Stamatelatos, 2002).

We are interested in answering three basic questions typically featured in probabilistic risk assessments (from Stamatelatos, 2000):

  • What can go wrong with a LPG-propane peak shaving facility like CenterPoint’s Lantana or Pecan Point and/or what are the initiators or initiating events (undesirable starting events) that lead to adverse consequence(s)?
  • What, and how severe, are the potential detriments, or the adverse consequences that a LPG-propane peak shaving facility may be eventually subjected to as a result of the occurrence of the initiator?
  • How likely to occur are these undesirable consequences, or what are their probabilities or frequencies?

In a related study, SWCCI would like to understand the offsite consequences associated with the location of two peak shaving facilities within 4 miles of each other (CenterPoint’s Lantana and Pecan Points) (e.g., OEM 1999).  We are interested in understanding the worst-case scenario and alternative release scenarios for facilities like these.  For example, if both plants were subject to an infrastructure attack and exploded how far will blast waves travel before serious injuries and short-term exposures will no longer occur?

The scientist/specialist will be able to:

  • Work with the SWCCI team who can assist with all aspects of the studies including screening, scoping, assessment, monitoring, etc.
  • Generate a report reflecting the probabilistic risk reduction and the off-site consequences findings co-authored with SSCI. 


Stamatelatos, M. (2000).  Probabilistic risk assessment:  What is it and why is it worth performing it? 

NASA (2002). Probabilistic Risk Assessment Procedures Guide for NASA Managers and Practitioners, Version 1.1. Washington, DC.

Office of Emergency Management  (1999).  Risk management program guidance for offsite consequence analysis.   US Environmental Protection Agency.