Saturday, 22 January 2011

Queensland flood

A large La Nina has increased precipitation and thought to have contributed massive flooding in Australia, though lower peaks in Brisbane than some previous years. Building in areas at flood risk did not help the situation, nor did the release of massive quantities of dam water (and here). The biggest concern is loss of lives, though I note the large difference in injury in countries with significant infrastructure compared with those without. Compare the death toll in Australian floods with that in Pakistan recently: 20 versus > 1000. Or the death-toll in Christchurch compared to Haiti after similar magnitude quakes: 0 versus 250,000. (The Chile earthquake was larger with a death toll ~500.)

Here some clever before and after photos that demonstrate the damage. Mouseover to see change.

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