Wednesday, September 23, 2015

El Nino prospects become a fall discussion topic for British Columbia

A new study on the El Nino and
La Nina weather patterns
notes the danger for BC coastlines
Coastal British Columbia should prepare for the arrival of El Nino, that is the advice from a University of Victoria professor who has authored a study on the weather phenomenon with a group of researchers from five countries.

Professor Ian Walker and the group of thirteen researchers from Universities and assorted Government agencies examined data collected from around the Pacific Rim to examine the impact of El Nino and La Nina systems on coastal shorelines.

The University of Victoria noted Dr. Walker's work on Monday with this background piece to his research work through UVic's Geography department.

“It's not just El Niño we should be concerned about ... Our research shows that severe coastal erosion and flooding can occur along the BC coast during both El Niño and La Niña storm seasons, unlike further south in California. We need to prepare not only for this winter, but also for what could follow when La Niña comes.” -- Dr. Ian Walker, UVic geography professor and co-author of a study on El Nino and La Nina weather patterns.

The report (available here) provides an examination of the twin weather patterns of El Nino and La Nina and provides thoughts on such themes of extreme coastal erosion, flooding and independent sea level rise.

It's expected that this will be a particularly active El Nino year, where warm Pacific water near the equator moves towards the coast of South America and then travels northbound sometimes as far as to Haida Gwaii, the North Coast and on to Alaska.

Some forecasters have suggested that this El Nino year could bring the same conditions as those felt in 1997-98 the most memorable El Nino year in recent history.

Some of the media reviews of the study provide more background on what may be ahead for this fall and winter season.

Vancouver Sun -- B. C. coast should brace for 'monster' El Nino year: UVic Professor
Global BC -- Parts of B. C. should prepare for 'monster' El Nino weather system: professor
CKNW -- El Nino and La Nina pose double whammy for BC coast
CBC -- "Monster El Nino" could cause flooding and erosion on B. C. coast: professor

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