Preventing water crises
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Preventing water crises

Thousands evacuated in Canada

In the last days of April 2019, after days of heavy rain, rivers flooded and reservoirs overflowed in eastern Canada. The situation was so severe that several thousand people in the region had to leave their homes.

The crisis is the most severe in the town of Sainte-Marthe-sur-le-Lac, west of Montreal, which was flooded by water from the Lake of Two Mountains after a natural dyke breached in the evening of the 27th of April.

More than 6500 people had to be evacuated from the town, while in the whole of rain-drenched Quebec province the number of flooded homes rose to 5600.

The provinces of New Brunswick and Ontario are also hit by floods. The minister of defence has stated that some two thousand soldiers have been mobilised to the flooded regions that have requested assistance from the Army. Volunteers and desperate homeowners have also joined the flood protection work to defend their homes against the rising waters.

Policemen wading in water check homes in Rigaud in Canada’s Quebec province Photo: MTI/EPA/André Pichette

Indonesia has lost land equal to the size of Jakarta

Over the last 15 years, Indonesia has lost 29,261 hectares of its land surface area due to soil erosion and growing sea levels.

Storm and flash floods hit the Washington area

On 8 July, a torrential rain hit the region of the capital of the United States, even flooding a press room in the basement of the White House near the West Wing.

56 unknown lakes discovered under the Greenland Ice Sheet

The Greenland Ice Sheet is about seven times the size of Great Britain and it is three kilometres thick in some places. The ice sheet and the waters beneath it play an important role in sea level rise, which is causing increasingly severe problems.

Antarctic sea ice melting rapidly over the last four years

While the ice cap over the North Pole has been shrinking as a result of climate change for quite some time, observations from Antarctica indicated slow growth of the ice cap – until 2014.

Massive flooding in Russia

Floods hit the Irkutsk region of Russia at the end of June. Five people lost their lives in the natural disaster. According to a summary from the Russian Emergencies Ministry, 351 people, including 33 children have suffered injuries.

Himalayan glaciers are melting rapidly

Scientists at Columbia University have used Cold War spy satellites to determine the changes that the glaciers of the Himalayas have undergone over the last forty years or so. The result is disheartening: the melting of the glaciers has accelerated drastically in recent years.

Sled dogs wade in water on Greenland

A photo taken on the 13th of June in Greenland has shocked the whole world: Steffen Olsen, a climate researcher with the Danish Meteorological Service had set off with his sled dog team to collect a few meteorological instruments, but instead of ice, he found water.

Inconceivable amount of ice melted in Greenland in a single day

13 June 2019 was marked by a rather alarming phenomenon: an almost unbelievable quantity of ice melted in Greenland. In the course of a single day, 2 billion tonnes of ice turned into water.

Torrential weather in China

Record rains have savaged southern China, the heavy downpour has killed several people. Hundreds of thousands had to be evacuated and many roads and bridges were badly damaged.

What will become of the sinking metropolis?

The rising water level of oceans, soil erosion and the increased number of earthquakes have jeopardised a number of major cities. According to experts, Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia is worst hit: a third of the metropolis with ten million inhabitants could be submerged by 2050.