Water News: Serious Problems on The Big Muddy, Quick or Slow, the River will go Where it Wants


Alex Wierbinski's picture

By Alex Wierbinski - Posted on 13 December 2017

 

 

WATER NEWS

Some Serious Problems on The Big Muddy

Quick or Slow, the Mississippi River Will go Where it Wants to Go

AGU Fall Meeting: Accumulating sediment in Mississippi River threatens course change,
American Geophysical Union, December 12, 2017.

According to this research we are just one megaflood, the next one, away from disaster. On the other hand, increasing flows projected over time bring exactly the same outcome, just taking a longer span of time to move the required materials required to shift the course of its own flows. In both cases, the movement of the river's course is just a matter of time.

I suspect we will not see just one or the other, but likely both scenarios play out, over the fullness of time...

How about the Mississippi blocking its course, and jumping routes during one event, then punching back through the old route during the next mega-flooding event?

The researcher who presented the paper above, says, "Such an event (a megaflood) would cause saltwater from the Gulf of Mexico to intrude upstream, Xu said, compromising freshwater for the New Orleans, Metairie, Kenner, and Houma-Bayou Cane-Thibodaux metropolitan areas, which collectively include nearly 1.5 million people."

"Another recent study also suggests that by the 2090s, changes in temperature and precipitation could increase the Mississippi River's flow by nearly 60 percent, increasing the likelihood of frequent and large floods."

We, being our human activities and behaviors, have supercharged the instability of an already unstable, and yet mighty river system. The Big Muddy is turning into the Monster Mississippi, one changing season at a time.

 

 

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December 2017 High Sierra General News

 

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