Hell and High Water

Dave 07You may have heard that we’ve had some high water in Calgary. Well, we certainly have. Nearly 100,000 people were forced from their homes when heavy rain in the foothills west of here, and at higher elevations in the still snow filled Rockies, caused major flooding in the Bow River watershed.

High River is a small community of about 13,000, just south of Calgary. It was completely evacuated, and most of the homes and businesses were damaged. The town’s name is a clue to the reason that this happened.

The situation for many people is tragic. Insurance is not available in Canada for overland flooding, so the provincial and federal governments have said they will step in. The restoration costs will be several billions of dollars.

What is really remarkable is the way local citizens have stepped forward to help. (An initial call for 600 volunteers produced thousands). And neighbors from across Canada, and as far south as Texas have offered help.

Calgary and Alberta will get through this, but we need to learn some lessons. Almost all of the damage was to property built on floodplains. Floodplains were given that name because they flood.

Over the 125 years of Calgary’s existence, we have had many floods. The earliest recorded was in 1897, and the water flow then was much higher than this time. But the population then was only 3500. It’s  1.2 million now and while the total amount of damage is higher, the extent of the damage is less.

All over Canada, and the United States, and the world, we build in places that we know will flood, quake, burn, or slide. Yet we’re astonished when it happens. This time the climate change alarmists are already at work telling us that our use of fossil fuels is causing the floods.

They completely ignore the fact that the Bow River has flooded throughout recorded, and pre-history. Cicero said that that if you don’t know what happened before you were born, you remain a child.

Since we can’t remove all the property from New Orleans, and Staten Island, and Manhattan, and downtown Calgary; we need some grown up politicians; and some bureaucrats with an uncommon allegiance to common sense, to develop flood prevention plans that don’t include “stubristic” fantasies about restoring the climate to some imaginary utopian level.

I don’t know about your town, but our City Council spent a lot of time last year debating whether or not to ban shark fin soup. A couple of years before that it was whether or not to license cats.

In case you were wondering, stubristic is not a typo. It is a new word combining stupid and hubristic. Feel free to use it. Stubrism is a prominent feature of the global warming / climate alarmism movement.

In this blog, and on the Let’s Do It Ourselves website, we will be battling stubrism with all our might. And if we say stubristic things ourselves, we are confident that you will point them out.

BTW, the Calgary Stampede, its grounds severely damaged by the floodwaters, is still on for July 5-14. This year’s slogan is “Hell or High Water”.

Going back, for our future.

Dave Reesor

Flood photos