Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Flood Stories - August 2013

70% of central Manila under water !!

  Wildfires burning in 11 Western states   CBS - August 19, 2013
As of Monday night, there are 49 large fires burning in 11 western states. In the mountains of Utah, smoke still billowed nearly a week after a fire was set off by lightning. The smoke nearly almost blocked the sunrise in Idaho. Thousands have been evacuated and the flames have crept near a prime tourist areas.

  Floods may add to woes in wildfire-hit Idaho   NBC - August 20, 2013
Officials battling a massive Idaho wildfire warned that thunderstorms forecast for Tuesday could trigger floods in the area already devastated by the "beast" of a blaze.

500 eruptions in 231 days?! Japan volcano coats city with ash - again   NBC - August 19, 2013
Residents in a southern Japanese city were busy washing ash off the streets Monday after a nearby volcano spewed a record-high smoke plume into the sky. Ash wafted as high as 3 miles above the Sakurajima volcano in the southern city of Kagoshima on Sunday afternoon, forming its highest plume since the Japan Meteorological Agency started keeping records in 2006. Lava flowed just over half a mile from the fissure, and several huge volcanic rocks rolled down the mountainside.

  Russia battles huge far east flood - 20,000 evacuated   BBC - August 19, 2013

More than 20,000 people have been evacuated from flood-stricken areas in Russia's far east, where the Amur river has burst its banks after heavy rain. Both the Amur river and a major tributary, the Zeya, have flooded huge areas in what is said to be the region's worst flooding for 120 years. The damage so far has been estimated at about 3bn rubles (£58m; $91m).

Death toll from weekend flooding, landslides passes 100   - August 19, 2013
Devastating floods at opposite ends of China have left 105 people dead and another 115 missing in recent days, state media said on Monday. Flooding in the northeast which left 72 people dead was described as the worst in decades by state news agency Xinhua, while another 33 people died in the south as a result of the weather, it said citing the ministry of civil affairs.

Global Sea Level Rise Dampened by Australia Floods   Science Daily - August 19, 2013
When enough raindrops fall over land instead of the ocean, they begin to add up. New research led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) shows that when three atmospheric patterns came together over the Indian and Pacific oceans, they drove so much precipitation over Australia in 2010 and 2011 that the world's ocean levels dropped measurably. Unlike other continents, the soils and topography of Australia prevent almost all of its precipitation from running off into the ocean. The 2010-11 event temporarily halted a long-term trend of rising sea levels caused by higher temperatures and melting ice sheets. Now that the atmospheric patterns have snapped back and more rain is falling over tropical oceans, the seas are rising again. In fact, with Australia in a major drought, they are rising faster than before.

The 20 Cities Most Vulnerable to Flooding   Live Science - August 19, 2013

Researchers have just figured out which cities across the globe face the highest risk from coastal flooding. To do so, they compiled data on 136 coastal cities with more than 1 million residents, looking at the elevation of the cities, the population distribution and the types of flood protection they had, such as levees or storm-surge barriers. They then combined that data with forecasts of sea level rise, ground sinking due to groundwater depletion, as well as population growth projections and economic forecasts of gross domestic product (GDP). From there, they used the depth of water flooding a city to estimate the cost of the damage.

Future Flood Losses in Major Coastal Cities: Costly Projections   Science Daily - August 19, 2013
The authors estimate present and future flood losses -- or the global cost of flooding -- in 136 of the world's largest coastal cities, taking into account existing coastal protections. Average global flood losses in 2005, estimated at about US$6 billion per year, could increase to US$52 billion by 2050 with projected socio-economic change alone. The cities ranked most at risk today, as measured by annual average losses due to floods, span developed and developing countries: Guangzhou, Miami, New York, New Orleans, Mumbai, Nagoya, Tampa-St. Petersburg, Boston, Shenzen, Osaka-Kobe, and Vancouver. The countries at greatest risk from coastal city flooding include the United States and China. Due to their high wealth and low protection level, three American cities (Miami, New York City and New Orleans) are responsible for 31 per cent of the losses across the 136 cities. Adding Guangzhou, the four top cities explain 43 per cent of global losses as of 2005. Total dollar cost is one way to assess risk. Another is to look at annual losses as a percentage of a city's wealth, a proxy for local vulnerability. Using this measure, Guangzhou, China; Guayaquil, Ecuador; Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; and Abidjan, Ivory Coast are among the most vulnerable.

Sudan floods kill 73 citizens   Kuwait News - August 19, 2013
The Sudanese government announced on Monday that floods that hit the country killed 73 people, while indicating that danger stage will end soon. The amount of flood's water that descended to Nile River, reached almost two billion cubic meters, he added. The current situation in Sudan is described as a crisis, which can be only avoided through great efforts by the government and the whole society.

Sudan Flood Photos Show Destruction After Devastating Rains   Huffington Post - August 19, 2013

Heavy rains and flash floods in Sudan have killed at least 36 people and forced thousands to leave their homes. The United Nations warned on Sunday that more than 150,000 people in the impoverished nation have been affected by the disaster and the number is expected to rise.