The Flood Was Forecast…Could Have Been Mitigated

“Meteorological studies suggest that rainfalls well in excess of those recorded in the floods of 1893 and 1974 are possible. Therefore it seems certain that unless major flood mitigation schemes, such as the proposed Wivenhoe Dam, are implemented, floods even greater than those of 1974 will again be experienced in Brisbane.”

Those words from a study from Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology. Unfortunately, those fears have played out since January 1. These devastating floods are not records — not even close. Here is a river stage graph via Roger Pielke, Jr.

This horrible flood appears to be a case of putting more and more civilization into harm’s way without sufficient thought given to the risk.

A frequent theme of this blog is mitigating risks both natural and man-made. This tragedy serves as a reminder that we ignore these risks at our peril.

Special thanks to Roger Pielke, Jr.

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