Things Are Good: After Going Green, Cities Need Turn Blue

Cities need to work with their local ecosystems and not against them. This is evidently true when it comes to waste management and overt displays of green initiatives. There is a harder aspect of ecological thinking for cities and it’s usually beneath our feet: water. Water systems are complex in every direction – getting drinking ...

The Disaffected Lib: Connecting the Dots on Climate Change

One of the biggest failures in climate change reporting is the tendency to focus on particular aspects without considering the bigger picture.  What does sea level rise have to do with droughts or floods?  What is the role of changing ocean circulation patterns?  How do these impacts all factor into our rapidly changing jet stream ...

Things Are Good: New York City’s Simple, and Green, Flood Prevention

New York, like other large cities, has a lot of impermeable services which means that when it rains there is little to contain the water. By using green infrastructure of soil, broken stone, shrubs, trees, etc. the bioswales can capture a lot of water. This green infrastructure is good for water management and obviously benefits ...

Bill Longstaff: Alberta politicos hedge on flood mitigation

After the great flood in Calgary last year, municipal and provincial governments agreed something had to be done to prevent another such catastrophe. There were, however, no shortage of sceptics. There would be bold promises initially, they said, but the commitments would wane with time, people would start to forget, and much less would be ...

Things Are Good: London Starts Planting Green Walls for Flood Prevention

Earlier this year, Toronto suffered some severe flooding and city planner Jennifer Keesmat composed this great tweet: Suddenly spending $ to maintain all of that not-so-sexy infrastructure and to plan for climate change seems wildly appealing. #TOflood — jennifer keesmaat (@jen_keesmaat) July 9, 2013 One of those programs she is referring to is the tower ...

Bill Longstaff: Is flood amnesia setting in?

Immediately after the big water in June, two truisms were out and about in Calgary. One stated the flood had been so catastrophic that finally Albertans would take significant measures to mitigate damage from future floods. The other said that it wouldn’t be long before the disaster was put out of mind and things would ...

Bill Longstaff: I participate in an historic event

For my first posting in seven months, I can hardly do better than comment on my participation in a truly historic event. I not only observed but became a fully-fledged, if highly reluctant, participant. The event I refer to is the greatest flood in Alberta’s history, perhaps in Canada’s history, the great flood of 2013. ...

Things Are Good: Green Roofs Assist in Flood Prevention

Yesterday Toronto got more rain in two hours than it normally does in a month which meant some serious flooding happened. This got me thinking of a program that Toronto (alleged crackhead) Mayor (busted for DUI) Rob (loves pollution) Ford (reads while driving) cancelled. The cancelled program promoted green roofs to help with flood control ...

Susan on the Soapbox: We’re all in this together–sort of. The Alberta Flood 2013

Nobody said it better than the Dairy Lane Cafe and the Blue Star Diner in a sunny (literally) little poster announcing that on Canada Day every penny received from sales and tips would be donated to flood relief.  The blue banner “We’re All in This Together” epitomized the can-do attitude of Calgarians, indeed all Albertans, ...

atypicalalbertan: Saving for a rainy day

The tragedy of recent historic flooding in Southern Alberta has had a profound impact on us. As an Edmontonian who spends a good deal of time in Calgary, my heart goes out to those who have been affected. Encouragingly, the Alberta spirit lives on and Calgarians will demonstrate resiliency as the rest of us demonstrate ...

atypicalalbertan: Saving for a rainy day

The tragedy of recent historic flooding in Southern Alberta has had a profound impact on us. As an Edmontonian who spends a good deal of time in Calgary, my heart goes out to those who have been affected. Encouragingly, the Alberta spirit lives on and Calgarians will demonstrate resiliency as the rest of us demonstrate ...

atypicalalbertan.ca: Saving for a rainy day

The tragedy of recent historic flooding in Southern Alberta has had a profound impact on us. As an Edmontonian who spends a good deal of time in Calgary, my heart goes out to those who have been affected. Encouragingly, the Alberta spirit lives on and Calgarians will demonstrate resiliency as the rest of us demonstrate ...

Things Are Good: Good Designs to Protect Against Flooding

The damage of Hurricane Sandy is still being fully realized and we won’t know the full cost of the damage for a little while. What we can do for know is to look into ways to lessen the damage the next time an anthropogenically influenced storm hits the city. The Atlantic has put together some ...

DeSmogBlog: Hot Enough For Ya? Extreme Weather Events Consistent With Climate Change Science

temperature map.gif Large portions of the U.S. are on fire. Record droughts currently encompass massive swaths of America. The areas not experiencing droughts have been inundated with flooding. Winter weather in many areas was almost non-existent. A few years ago, an Academy Award-winning film called “An Inconvenient Truth” warned wary Americans that all of these events ...