July 21, 2024
Indicators point toward worse Great Lakes flooding than 2017
Vasseur's recommendation is for residents living near coastlines to invest in waterproofing measures, and for municipalities to start creating buffer zones along rivers and lakes.
Vasseur’s recommendation is for residents living near coastlines to invest in waterproofing measures, and for municipalities to start creating buffer zones along rivers and lakes.

Record-high lake levels led to devastating flood damage in Great Lakes coastal communities in 2017, but in the two years since, little has changed.

Brock University Professor of Biology and UNESCO Chair in Community Sustainability Liette Vasseur said those communities are in for serious flooding this year.

And she says despite knowing it was coming, our complacency as a society has meant that we’re not only ill-prepared, but we’ve made things worse on ourselves.

“The pragmatism people have is that it’s all about today. Nobody thinks about the future,” she said. “We knew this was going to happen. All the signs were there.”

Vasseur is an internationally recognized expert in the field of coastal flooding and climate change adaptation and is currently leading a research project examining the impacts of the 2017 flooding and what could have been done to change the outcomes.

She’s been carefully watching the rising lake levels and said Lake Erie, for example, hit a record high in late April.

Vasseur said the explanation can be found in a number of areas such as the control level plan for the Great Lakes and heavy snowfall and spring rainfall for some regions, but she said the decisions of municipalities and residents are having a major impact.

“There are climate drivers, but what doesn’t help is the fact that people are building close to rivers and lakes,” she said. “These are dynamic systems. The human component is very important. You remove wetlands and pave over other areas so with heavy rainfall, the water has to go somewhere else.”


See Also:

(1) Impossible research produces 400-year El Nino record, revealing startling changes


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May 7, 2019 1:39 pm

For those people who insisted on building in high-risk flood areas, defined floodplain areas in Montreal for instance pay attention. You knew or ought to have known the risks. Take a lesson from Manitoba. Adapt to a force you cannot control, just like we did. We have two rivers flowing through the heart of our downtown. So even with the ingenious Red River Floodway (which can be seen from outer space actually) we went even one step further for protection and built the Portage Diversion to handle a springtime flood threatening Assiniboine River. Many years over and billions of dollars in savings… a huge win win for Winnipeg. So stop your whining and oh poor me and get on with it already. Your personal decisions and/or your politicians, not the environment, left you in this precarious situation. Agreed there is no single solution to all the flooding in eastern Canada but a tax on a litre of regular gasoline leads off the ‘none of the above’ list. Demand that your politicians conduct themselves like responsible adults. Read here about one who did against a full out assault by so-called experts. Who were all wrong. Read and heed…now get on with it.

In 1950, the Red River inundated one-eighth of Winnipeg. In low-lying areas, the water was 4.6 metres deep. It forced 100,000 residents from their homes.


May 7, 2019 1:08 pm

Just two examples. A few short decades ago the panic stricken self proclaimed experts were running around with their hair on fire shouting that ‘ the world is running out of oil’! Mother Nature revealed her gift to puny mankind. Today the world is literally awash in crude and new huge fields being discovered and even more yet to be. A mere 5 years ago the barnyard hysterics spewing out of these liars or just plain fools progressive mouths was “one fifth of the world’s fresh water (Great Lakes) is dwindling away’. Mother Nature intervened. Today’s barnyard hysterics…. GREAT LAKES RISING! A month or so ago the so-called experts were predicting serious flood threats for southern Manitoba. Yup, Mother Nature spoke up, not so fast oh puny ones. Not even close to a flood. Yesterday the so-called experts predicted cloud and rain for Winnipeg. Here she goes again….today it is sunny blue skies.

Some 50-60 M years ago National Geographic reported that Canada’s Arctic once hosted alligators and turtles. Or how about this… “Today the frozen Antarctic ice sheet borders the Southern Ocean. But tropical palm trees once flourished there. An intense warming phase occurred 52 million years ago, leading tropical vegetation, including palms and relatives of today’s tropical Baobab trees, to grow on the continent’s now frozen coasts.” An intense warming period millions of years ago not attributable to SUV’s. But to this…An important factor was the transfer of heat via warm ocean currents that reached Antarctica. When the warm ocean current collapsed and the Antarctic coast came under the influence of cooler ocean currents, the tropical rainforests, palm trees and Baobab relatives also disappeared. Mother Nature. Not SUVs. Not cows.

Yes, the climate is changing. So what? In my school days they actually taught this stuff instead of the urgent requirement for unisex bathrooms and shower rooms. Or that boys can be girls or vice versa. Our educators taught us that the climate has always changed instead of for example that Donald Trump is responsible for the impending extinction of the African elephant. A carbon tax for the environment is a lie. How do we know? They’ve told us for cripes sakes. But don’t take my word for it, take the UN’s…

“We (UN-IPCC) redistribute
de facto the world’s wealth by climate policy…”
“One has to free oneself from the illusion that international
climate policy is environmental policy. This has almost nothing
to do with environmental policy anymore…”

Dr. Ottmar Endenhofer, IPCC
Co-chair of Working Group 3
November 13th, 2010

Okay, so now who do you believe?