Cargo Demands Hold Steady at Port Houston

Gulf Port Underscores its Commitment to Community Engagement

Former Port Commissioner Howard J. Middleton, Jr., remembered.

HOUSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority held its regular meeting on Tuesday, June 27. During the meeting, Executive Director Roger Guenther delivered his monthly staff report to the commission, saying in part, “Cargo demand remains in line with the Port’s 2023 forecast with a small 2% decrease in overall container volume. An increase in export loads for the year have balanced the anticipated slight decline in import containers.”

The Executive Director also shared that during the prior week, he and several Port Houston staff members joined leaders of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers, along with community members to discuss the community’s questions about upland dredged material placement areas serving the Houston Ship Channel.

Guenther said these were “good meetings” with “many in-depth discussions.” He also shared with the Port Commission that he appreciated the dialogue and “wants our neighbors to know that we hear their concerns, we value safety and environmental sustainability, and we will continue to consider those factors in our work” and that “the dialogue will continue.”

Guenther also shared that Port Houston is planning community meetings, possibly as early as July and August, to give an overview of the dredging and materials testing and placement processes and how they all work, to “build a shared understanding of what we do and why we do it,” he said.

Guenther highlighted that dredge disposal sites are necessary for improvements and maintenance of the Houston Ship Channel. He underscored that dredging provides for safe navigation and continued commerce that drives regional prosperity.

Earlier this month, Port Houston compiled detailed answers to an advocacy group’s questions about the placement areas and the federal testing regime for the materials placed there. Guenther emphasized that Port Houston would work with its neighbors and Federal partners to continue to be responsive and would also explore future site uses.

During the meeting, Port Commissioner Clyde Fitzgerald also recognized the recent passing of former Port Commissioner Howard J. Middleton, Jr., who served Port Houston in that role for nearly two decades, from 1978-1996.

The first African-American to be appointed to the Port Commission, Mr. Middleton played an instrumental role in supporting the development of the Bayport Container Terminal, among his many other significant contributions over his long tenure, said Commissioner Fitzgerald

Staff also announced that Port Houston received recognition by the Government Finance Officers Association for Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for the 48th consecutive year.

The next Port Commission regular meeting is July 25, 2023.

About Port Houston

For more than 100 years, Port Houston has owned and operated the public wharves and terminals along the Houston Ship Channel, including the area’s largest breakbulk facility and two of the most efficient container terminals in the country. Port Houston is the advocate and a strategic leader for the Channel. The Houston Ship Channel complex and its more than 200 private and eight public terminals, collectively known as the Port of Houston, is the nation’s largest port for waterborne tonnage and an essential economic engine for the Houston region, the state of Texas and the U.S. The Port of Houston supports the creation of nearly 1.5 million jobs in Texas and 3.4 million jobs nationwide, and economic activity totaling $439 billion in Texas and $906 billion in economic impact across the nation. For more information, visit the website at


Lisa Ashley-Daniels, Director, Public Relations, Office: 713-670-2644; Mobile: 832-247-8179; E-mail: [email protected]

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