Somebody save Canmore!

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apogee

climber
Technically expert, safe belayer, can lead if easy
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 22, 2013 - 02:51am PT
"It is disgusting how little press this has received. "

Yeah, WTF is that about?
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Jun 22, 2013 - 08:40am PT
At the risk of being pegged a Global Warming Alarmist, there may be a link here....

Stalled high pressure system -- a ‘firehose of moisture’ -- caused floods in Calgary


EDMONTON - A massive high pressure system held in place by a loop in the jet stream is what’s behind both the Calgary floods and balmy temperatures in the Yukon.

“It doesn’t let systems through,” said Chris Scott, chief meteorologist at the Weather Network. He watched as what would otherwise be just a simple spring storm got stuck west of Calgary.

The weather system came over the mountains from the Pacific. As it spun and stalled over the foothills, it pulled in moisture from Saskatchewan, the United States and the Gulf of Mexico. Starting Wednesday around suppertime, it poured for 15 to 18 hours straight across most of southwest Alberta.

“It was like this firehose of moisture,” Scott said. “(The weather system) just kept slamming this moisture into the mountains.”

One spot at the Three Sisters Dam in Kananaskis got 220 millimetres of water in 36 hours, which is “nearly half of the total annual precipitation for that area.”

Many areas got as much rain in 18 hours as they normally get in two months. Locations from Waterton Lakes National Park north were measuring near 100 mm, and some got as high as 120 or 150 mm. Bow Valley, west of Calgary on Highway 1, got 165 mm.



Read more: http://www.edmontonjournal.com/technology/Firehose+moisture+caused+floods+Calgary/8561123/story.html#ixzz2Wwlqi4EL



The "Jet stream loop " mentioned is a recent phenomena that has been observed world wide and appears to be responsible for "persistent" weather patterns, such as the European wet and cold spring or the SW drought. I'm sure the link of this pattern to AGW is still not conclusively understood but AGW is well understood to be the dominant forcing mechanism influencing the current climate change.

If it is linked - as is a reasonable suspicion by anyones guess - it is not a good trend.

That was an upslope like few others. You don't want that sort of thing to happen often.


I just heard about 3 confirmed fatalities. Things were looking super lucky for a while there but I guess its a good thing its only 3 so far. Really sad to hear


Any news about the folks at Johnsons Landing down at Kootenay lake? There was a similar persistent wet period that set them up last year and I understand there is still plenty more potential.
wbw

Trad climber
'cross the great divide
Jun 22, 2013 - 09:42am PT
Such a sad situation; such a special part of the world. Positive vibes to all folks affected by this tragedy.

Just out of curiosity: I've been dealing with the topic of flood insurance and the soon-to-be-changing flood maps for the city of Boulder. The so-called 100 year flood plain will be greatly expanded along some drainages that seem to be pretty obscure (and absolutely dry except in rare heavy downpours). Bruce, this may be tangentially related to your comments about climate change.

Anyway, how much does the government up there in Alberta, and mortgage companies impose flood insurance on homes located in flood plains in Canada? I purchased flood insurance last week on my house in Boulder for the first time in 16 years, so that I can get grandfathered in at a more affordable rate once the maps change. Good thing is that the city of Boulder has given residents a heads up so that one can be proactive. Bad thing is that the mortgage companies force one to buy flood insurance that has become much more expensive since the devastating Mississippi River floods of several years ago.

Again, best hopes and thoughts to all of you in Alberta.
TGT

Social climber
So Cal
Jun 22, 2013 - 10:08am PT
Drudge has it up

Looks like there have been some fatalities.


http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/story/2013/06/21/alberta-flooding-calgary-canmore-high-water.html
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Jun 22, 2013 - 10:22am PT
wbw - I'm covered for flood with no rider - standard policy. If I want earthquake coverage I gotta pay a bit more, which I'm thinking about at least.....

I live right next door to a 15 foot high dyke at the confluence of two big rivers. We had a 100 year flood just a few years ago that came within a couple of feet of breaching.
WTF

climber
Jun 22, 2013 - 10:56am PT
Yeah, WTF is that about?

Well since you asked I suspect its about the fact that unlike here in Amerika the Canadians don't need to spray their flood problems all over the TV and radio. They know there is a flood they know there is very little they can do to stop it and they are just waiting for the rain to stop.

The rivers will go down they will clean up and they will carry on. Unlike here when this type of event occurs we panic we go on TV we cry we obsess about losing property and our stuff. In Canada it's just stfu and deal.

Riley hope your family is ok and to all my Canadian friends best wishes.

Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jun 22, 2013 - 11:04am PT
Speaking of Canadians, I'll bet there's no looting and rioting after the floods either.
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Jun 22, 2013 - 11:16am PT
No Jan. All Canadian teams are out of the playoffs ages ago so there is really nothing to riot about.


This is cool. This guys said these words a couple of weeks ago:

John Pomeroy, the Canada research chair in Water Resources and Climate Change at the University of Saskatchewan, has studied rainfall records on the Prairies for the past century and found a marked increase in the number of multi-day rain events during the summer that can overwhelm streams and rivers.

“Those big frontal systems are increasing in their intensity and frequency,” said Pomeroy, “and we’re fast learning that our roads, our bridges and even some of our towns aren’t any match for the rainfall and the overflow that results.”



Read more: http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/alberta/Alberta+urged+prepare+increasingly+severe+weather+insurance+losses+mount/8446756/story.html#ixzz2WxTLxeZV


He also deliberately lives up on a hill side.... above the flood plain
Jim Brennan

Trad climber
Vancouver Canada
Jun 22, 2013 - 12:33pm PT
RC drone's eye view:

TGT

Social climber
So Cal
Jun 22, 2013 - 02:06pm PT
Was this one AGW too?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Flood_of_1862

it was estimated that approximately one-quarter of the taxable real estate in the state of California was destroyed in the flood. Dependent on property taxes, the State of California went bankrupt. The governor, state legislature, and state employees were not paid for a year and a half.[

There's geological evidence in the drainage's of coastal streams that this has been happening at about 200 year intervals for a very long time.
kunlun_shan

Mountain climber
SF, CA
Jun 22, 2013 - 02:11pm PT
Riley, what worries me is an event like this happening in northern Alberta, and overflowing the tar sands tailings ponds. All that toxic crap would be everywhere and into arctic drainages.
Chief

climber
The NW edge of The Hudson Bay
Jun 22, 2013 - 02:28pm PT
I wonder how the trout will be affected by all this?
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Jun 22, 2013 - 03:13pm PT
Boy, all those Murrican turoids goin' up to Banff are gonna be pissed off!
How could yous guys let this happen?
McHale's Navy

Trad climber
From Panorama City, CA
Jun 22, 2013 - 03:25pm PT
Riley, what worries me is an event like this happening in northern Alberta, and overflowing the tar sands tailings ponds. All that toxic crap would be everywhere and into arctic drainages.

http://www.theprovince.com/news/canada/Sour+leak+southern+Alberta+called+potentially+life+threatening/8554736/story.html
Credit: McHale's Navy
kunlun_shan

Mountain climber
SF, CA
Jun 22, 2013 - 03:34pm PT
^ Fortunately that was a relatively small leak. According to this - http://desmog.ca/2013/06/11/fort-mcmurray-home-176-square-km-tar-sands-tailings-ponds-overwhelmed-floods - the tar sands, so far, have 176 sq km of tailings ponds. A lot of area to protect, and severe consequences if this toxic crap gets out.

http://desmog.ca/2013/06/13/fort-mcmurray-flooding-emphasizes-tar-sands-threat-mackenzie-river-basin

Mackenzie Basin drainages
Mackenzie Basin drainages
Credit: desmog.ca
McHale's Navy

Trad climber
From Panorama City, CA
Jun 22, 2013 - 03:45pm PT
http://www.greenpeace.org/canada/en/Blog/if-the-alberta-government-didnt-inform-you-ab/blog/45597/

Pretty much what happens all over the world. There was a big news blackout when the Gulf Sperm Whales died. They did not run away like we have been taught to think. Sorry, I don't mean to hijack this thread!
kunlun_shan

Mountain climber
SF, CA
Jun 22, 2013 - 04:21pm PT
TFPU, McHale's Navy! I didn't know about this. Of course its not in the Albetra government's interest to make the public aware...

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/apache-pipeline-leaks-60000-barrels-of-salty-water-in-northwest-alberta/article12494371/

Toxic waste spill in northern Alberta biggest of recent disasters in North America

The substance is the inky black colour of oil, and the treetops are brown. Across a broad expanse of northern Alberta muskeg, the landscape is dead. It has been poisoned by a huge spill of 9.5 million litres of toxic waste from an oil and gas operation in northern Alberta, the third major leak in a region whose residents are now questioning whether enough is being done to maintain aging energy infrastructure.

The spill was first spotted on June 1. But not until Wednesday did Houston-based Apache Corp. release estimates of its size, which exceeds all of the major recent spills in North America. I.....

...The leak follows a pair of other major spills in the region, including 800,000 litres of an oil-water mixture from Pace Oil and Gas Ltd., and nearly 3.5 million litres of oil from a pipeline run by Plains Midstream Canada.

After those accidents, the Dene Tha had asked the Energy Resources Conservation Board, Alberta’s energy regulator, to require installation of pressure and volume monitors, as well as emergency shutoff devices, on aging oil and gas infrastructure. The Apache spill has renewed calls for change.

“We don’t believe that the government is doing enough to ensure upgrades and maintenance of the lines,” Mr. Ahnassay said.

The Apache spill took place in an area rich with wetlands. Though the Dene Tha suspect waterfowl have died, the company said it has seen no wildlife impacts. The spill has not reached the Zama River, although the Alberta government said it has affected tributaries. Water monitoring is ongoing.

Neither Apache nor Alberta initially disclosed the spill, which was only made public after someone reported it to a TV station late last week. The National Energy Board, by comparison, sent out a news release Tuesday after a spill of five to seven barrels of oil at an Imperial Oil Ltd. refinery in Sarnia, Ont....
BMcC

Trad climber
Livermore
Jun 22, 2013 - 09:10pm PT
Amazing and sad to see the flooding and related damage, and its effects will impact so many people for longer than the duration of the high water!

apogee - thanks for starting this thread. I had read some about the flooding in Calgary and was guessing that Canmore was probably getting slammed, too.
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