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Info on Warnings, Reports, Planning (Research Project)

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posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 11:50 AM
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Valhall has asked me to specifically look at the Pre- Katrina dimension for the ATS research topic.

Please post links or information to warnings, planning, reports.

This is not warnings as in someone had a dream that something would happen. I'm looking for credible warnings from planning officials, scientist, or politicians. As far back as you like.

This will free Val up to be able to concentrate on the more immediate issues.

this thread must remain strictly apolitical.

Anything you have in this area please post here so that I can collate it.

Thankyou.

[edit on 5-9-2005 by John bull 1]




posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 11:53 AM
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Prospect Magazine.


In the event of a slow-moving Category 4 or Category 5 hurricane (with winds up to or exceeding 155 miles per hour), it's possible that only those crow's nests would remain above the water level. Such a storm, plowing over the lake, could generate a 20-foot surge that would easily overwhelm the levees of New Orleans, which only protect against a hybrid Category 2 or Category 3 storm (with winds up to about 110 miles per hour and a storm surge up to 12 feet). Soon the geographical "bowl" of the Crescent City would fill up with the waters of the lake, leaving those unable to evacuate with little option but to cluster on rooftops -- terrain they would have to share with hungry rats, fire ants, nutria, snakes, and perhaps alligators. The water itself would become a festering stew of sewage, gasoline, refinery chemicals, and debris.

I thought of the city’s vulnerability recently, when the latest news came out from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration: We can expect another very active Atlantic hurricane season this year, beginning on June 1 and stretching to the end of November. Last year, four hurricanes devastated swaths of Florida. One of the biggest ones, Ivan (a Category 4 storm) seemed to have New Orleans in its sights for a while. Ivan triggered a mass evacuation -- members of my family scrambled to Shreveport, Baton Rouge, and Houston -- but ultimately missed the city. Now, however, New Orleanians are in for another nail-biting fall and once again must contemplate the possibility of the dreaded "Atlantis scenario" becoming reality.

A direct hit from a powerful hurricane on New Orleans could furnish perhaps the largest natural catastrophe ever experienced on U.S. soil. Some estimates suggest that well over 25,000 non-evacuees could die. Many more would be stranded, and successful evacuees would have nowhere to return to. Damages could run as high as $100 billion. In the wake of such a tragedy, some may even question the wisdom of trying to rebuild the city at all. And to hear hurricane experts like Louisiana State University's Ivor van Heerden tell it, it's only a matter of time before the "big one" hits.

Currently, pretty much every long-term trend cuts against the safety of New Orleans. Levees are subsiding; coastal wetlands (which can slow storm surges) are continually disappearing; and sea levels are rising. And then there's global warming -- a warmer world with warmer ocean temperatures should theoretically experience worse hurricanes. Most importantly, the Atlantic Ocean appears to have entered an active hurricane cycle, with the potential to fling storms at the Gulf Coast for years to come. This puts New Orleans on the vanguard among U.S. coastal cities (including New York) that will have to think hard about their growing vulnerabilities in the coming years. The process of deciding how to save an entire coastal metropolis has begun, but the discussion has largely been confined to experts, and not nearly broad or ambitious enough yet.


www.prospect.org...



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 12:00 PM
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If anyone can find an online copy of this 5 part article entitled "Washing Away" I'd really like it.


Remarkably, The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune in 2002 published "Washing Away," a series of articles that predicted catastrophe if a major hurricane hit and levees were breached. Inland areas already were suffering deeper flooding more often from storms, the paper reported. Tropical Storm Frances in 1998, for instance, pushed a storm surge into St. Charles Parish that covered U.S. 90 for a week. The series noted that the sinking coast had "emergency managers fretting that low points will be cut off during an evacuation -- including Interstate 10, which drops 12 feet below sea level" at one point in New Orleans. Television images captured that reality last week.


www.newsobserver.com...



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 12:03 PM
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Four years ago the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) warned a major hurricane or flooding in the Big Easy was among the three catastrophes most likely to hit the United States, along with a terrorist attack on New York.


But instead of boosting funding to the centuries-old city of 1.4 million people that lies below sea level, authorities cut funding for hundreds of millions of dollars of critical work to bolster and repair the levees that keep the waters of the Mississippi River and Lake Pontchartrain at bay.

"This was a disaster waiting to happen," said John Rennie, editor-in-chief of U.S. science and technology bible, Scientific American.

"For years there has been a multitude of warnings that critical work on rebuilding the levees has been lagging and that the city was particularly vulnerable but these warnings effectively went unheeded," he said

www.japantoday.com...

also linked here:
yahoo news

found this, too. FEMA search function is not yielding this report, but I'll keep trying
www.hurricane.lsu.edu...


[edit on 5-9-2005 by DontTreadOnMe]

[edit on 5-9-2005 by DontTreadOnMe]



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 12:05 PM
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We'll need that warning from FEMA.



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 12:06 PM
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This article compares NOLA's Katrina with the SanFrancisco earthquake. Bot caused secondary damage that was far worse than the oriignal natural happening:

As Americans followed in horror the anarchy, looting and mounting death toll in the wake of the New Orleans flooding, California historians compared that city's devastation with another disaster of nearly a century ago: the San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906.

In both cases, they say, cities crucial to the U.S. economy of the era — San Francisco's financial might and New Orleans' offshore oil reserves — were hit by a natural disaster: one by an 8.3 magnitude temblor and the other by a Category 4 hurricane.

But after withstanding the first blow, both cities suffered extensive damage from the unexpected second punch that followed within hours.

latimes.com



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 12:09 PM
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Originally posted by John bull 1
If anyone can find an online copy of this 5 part article entitled "Washing Away" I'd really like it.


Remarkably, The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune in 2002 published "Washing Away," a series of articles that predicted catastrophe if a major hurricane hit and levees were breached. Inland areas already were suffering deeper flooding more often from storms, the paper reported. Tropical Storm Frances in 1998, for instance, pushed a storm surge into St. Charles Parish that covered U.S. 90 for a week. The series noted that the sinking coast had "emergency managers fretting that low points will be cut off during an evacuation -- including Interstate 10, which drops 12 feet below sea level" at one point in New Orleans. Television images captured that reality last week.


www.newsobserver.com...



Found this link.................not too sure if its what you are looking for.

www.nola.com.../washingaway/



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 01:01 PM
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Joseph Suhayda is a civil engineer who has worked on coastal Louisiana topics since the 1980s.
He appeared on NOW ith Bill Moyers in 2002 and talked at length about a mjor hurrican hitting NOLA.

DANIEL ZWERDLING: I'm trying to picture tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of people trapped in these traffic jams as the hurricane is hitting the City and the water level is starting to rise. What would happen to them?

JOE SUHAYDA:They would be washed away and there would be really no way for the help, there is public help emergency services people to get to them to help them.

DANIEL ZWERDLING: And on top of those worries: scientists say that the threat to New Orleans keeps getting bigger.

New Orleans has always had a huge natural shield that helps protect it from storms: there are miles and miles of wetlands, between the city and the Gulf of Mexico. When a hurricane blows over them, it loses some of its power. But as we reported a couple of weeks ago, this shield is breaking apart.

And here's the irony: the wetlands are disappearing because of the levees. The very levees that were supposed to protect New Orleans. They stopped the Mississippi River from flooding, but it turns out that they also triggered an environmental chain reaction, which is starving the wetlands to death.

Scientists say if this shield keeps crumbling over the next few decades, then it won't take a giant storm to cause a disaster. A much weaker, more common kind of hurricane could devastate New Orleans.

www.pbs.org...



this could be a very important report:

GIS Assessment of the Vulnerability of a Core Tourist Area in New
Orleans to Impacts of Flood Inundation During a Hurricane Event (Spring 2001)




[edit on 5-9-2005 by DontTreadOnMe]



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 02:06 PM
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The state of Louisiana is committed to saving America’s Wetland. The Governor’s Commission on Coastal Restoration and Conservation was legislatively created and the terms of commission members are staggered in order to transcend any one governor’s appointments. The present chair of the commission is R. King Milling, president of Whitney National Bank. The commission is instrumental in bringing all stakeholders to the table, from industry to environmental groups, and is playing an important role in helping our legislature and citizens understand the need for a strong commitment to pay our fair cost share of this vital restoration effort.

The citizens of Louisiana have already approved three constitutional amendments that directly address liability and funding issues to ensure our ability to cost share with the Federal government and to further our efforts to sustain the values of this critical coastal area.

The Energy Bill

The Energy Policy Act of 2003, which did not pass this year, had an amendment that provided for sharing offshore oil and gas revenues with coastal states that support Outer Continental Shelf production off their coasts. The funds could have been used for coastal protection and restoration, subsidence, mitigation and wildlife protection, and to secure critical energy infrastructure facilities. It encouraged coordination of implementation plans between states, counties and Federal programs; established priorities of those environmental impacts identified in NEPA analysis, and protected moratoria areas. The automatic spending provision in the bill, however, was stripped.

WRDA (Water Resources Development Act)

Through a 50/50 partnership between the state and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, a feasibility study of the Coast 2050 plan has been completed that addresses restoration efforts in the near-term, the first phase of implementation of the coast-wide, comprehensive approach ultimately needed to sustain the values of Louisiana’s coastline. A request for authorization of the near-term plan, the Louisiana Coastal Area (LCA) plan, died along with the WRDA 2004 bill. However, pressure is building for Congress to pass a WRDA bill in 2005. A favorable report has been signed by the Chief of Engineers that supports the LCA.


www.paceonline.org...

More info searching: Landrieu WRDA CARA


[edit on 5-9-2005 by Vajrayana]



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 06:50 PM
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Scientific American, October 2001
by Mark Fischetti; 10 page(s) :

New Orleans is a disaster waiting to happen. The city lies below sea level, in a bowl bordered by levees that fend off Lake Pontchartrain to the north and the Mississippi River to the south and west. And because of a damning confluence of factors, the city is sinking further, putting it at increasing flood risk after even minor storms. The low-lying Mississippi Delta, which buffers the city from the gulf, is also rapidly disappearing. A year from now another 25 to 30 square miles of delta marsh-an area the size of Manhattan-will have vanished. An acre disappears every 24 minutes. Each loss gives a storm surge a clearer path to wash over the delta and pour into the bowl, trapping one million people inside and another million in surrounding communities. Extensive evacuation would be impossible because the surging water would cut off the few escape routes. Scientists at Louisiana State University (L.S.U.), who have modeled hundreds of possible storm tracks on advanced computers, predict that more than 100,000 people could die. The body bags wouldn't go very far.


Washing Away | Five-Part Series published June 23-27, 2002 - SPECIAL REPORT from THE TIMES-PICAYUNE -

It's only a matter of time before South Louisiana takes a direct hit from a major hurricane. Billions have been spent to protect us, but we grow more vulnerable every day.



Disaster in the making
2004-09-22 'FEMA is Being Ravaged'

As FEMA weathers a storm of Bush administration policy and budget changes, protection from natural hazards may be trumped by “homeland security”

... In June, Pleasant Mann, a 16-year FEMA veteran who heads the agency's government employee union, wrote members of Congress to warn of the agency's decay. "Over the past three-and-one-half years, FEMA has gone from being a model agency to being one where funds are being misspent, employee morale has fallen, and our nation's emergency management capability is being eroded," he wrote. "Our professional staff are being systematically replaced by politically connected novices and contractors."


Federal government wasn't ready for Katrina, disaster experts say Wed, Aug. 31, 2005

Last year, FEMA spent $250,000 to conduct an eight-day hurricane drill for a mock killer storm hitting New Orleans. Some 250 emergency officials attended. Many of the scenarios now playing out, including a helicopter evacuation of the Superdome, were discussed in that drill for a fictional storm named Pam.

This year, the group was to design a plan to fix such unresolved problems as evacuating sick and injured people from the Superdome and housing tens of thousands of stranded citizens.

Funding for that planning was cut, said Tolbert, the former FEMA disaster response director.


The Drowning of New Orleans: Hurricane Devastation Was Predicted
Thursday, September 1st, 2005 :

The New Orleans Times-Picayune wrote three years ago, "It's only a matter of time before south Louisiana takes a direct hit from a major hurricane. Billions have been spent to protect us, but we grow more vulnerable every day." We look at the lack of infrastructure preparedness in the Big Easy. [includes rush transcript]


LSU Hurricane Center, Electronic Publications - FLOODING

What information and technology is currently available to help us understand the risks associated with hurricanes? What resources may be available in the future to the research and emergency management community?
"Risk Assessment of Natural and Technological Hazards: A look at Calcasieu Parish," John C. Pine, Associate Professor, Institute for Environmental Studies, LSU

"Remote Sensing and Emergency Management for Coastal Environmental Disasters," Oscar KI. Huh, Ph.D. Coastal Studies Institute, LSU, Baton Rouge, LA

"Weather Information for Emergency Management'" Kevin Robbins, Director, Southern Regional Climate Center, LSU, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

How can we examine the impact of hurricanes on the Louisiana natural environment and on chemical process operations in Louisiana?
"Real time forecasting of Hurricane Winds and Flooding," Vibhas Aravamuthan, Joseph N. Suhayda, Natural Systems Engineering Laboratory, Louisiana Water Resources Research Institute, LSU

"Real Time Flood Modeling Due To The Severe Rainfall During A Hurricane: The West Fork of the Calcasieu River, Calcasieu and Beauregard Parishes, Louisiana," Hassan S. Mashriqui, Engineering Director, Natural Systems Modeling Group, CCEER, John C. Pine, Associate Professor, Institute for Environmental Studies, Doug Albert, Graduate Student, Geography Department, LSU


SELA Budget Cuts
New Orleans CityBusiness, Jul 1, 2002 New Orleans mayor, parish president seek flood control funding

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin and Jefferson Parish President Tim Coulon traveled to Washington, D.C. last week to stump for continued funding for a raft of flood control projects now endangered by budget cuts. The Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Projects are already under way but its budgets have been trimmed as federal funds are reapportioned for homeland defense initiatives. The most visible project will put two new drainage canals beneath Napoleon and S. Claiborne avenues in the Broadmoor area. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans are responsible for the project, with the corps providing 75% of the funding. Nagin and Coulon asked congressional leaders and the corps to provide $15 million in federal funds to complete this and other area SELA projects.


New Orleans City Business, June 13, 2005 Louisiana contractors affected by federal budget cuts

The cuts mean a long list of backlogged drainage and hurricane protection projects totaling $150 million would continue to sit on the shelf because the Corps has no money to award new contracts.


New Orleans City Business - June 6, 2005 New Orleans district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers faces Budget Cuts

The House of Representatives wants to cut the New Orleans district budget 21 percent to $272.4 million in 2006, down from $343.5 million in 2005. The House figure is about $20 million lower than the president's suggested $290.7 million budget.


Warnings to Beef Up New Orleans' '60s-Era Levees Unheeded BY JOHN McQUAID And BILL WALSH c.2005 Newhouse News Service

Officials at the Army Corps of Engineers knew it for years, and emergency managers and hurricane experts issued dire warnings: The hurricane levees surrounding the New Orleans area were built to withstand only a relatively weak Category 3 hurricane -- not anything like Hurricane Katrina, a Category 4 mega-storm.

...The problem was, in fact, solvable. It's possible to engineer protections for the New Orleans area against Category 4 and 5 storm surges, which can top 20 feet: raising and fortifying levees, building gates to control water flow into the lake. That would cost $2.5 billion, according to Army Corps estimates.

But it never happened because of two problems, Suhayda said: a lack of political will to tackle an enormous and costly problem when competition for federal resources is intense; and what he called a "bureaucratic mentality" at the Army Corps that focused on incremental upgrades of existing structures.


Federal Government Has Neglected Disaster Preparedness (I have gone through and added links to references contained in this article: CatHerder)

1. DISASTER PREPAREDNESS FUNDING CUT BY BUSH ADMINISTRATION
Federal Government Has Neglected Disaster Preparedness, Left Enormous Vulnerabilities. Disaster and emergency experts have warned for years that governments, especially the federal government, have put so much stress on disaster response that they have neglected policies to minimize a disaster's impact in advance. Robert Hartwig, chief economist for the Insurance Information Institute, said It's going to be very evident that there were an enormous number of vulnerabilities that weren't addressed. There's going to be a lot of finger-pointing. [Newhouse News Service, 8/31/05]

Disaster Mitigation Programs Slashed Since 2001. Since 2001, key federal disaster mitigation programs, developed over many years, have been slashed and tossed aside. FEMAs Project Impact, a model mitigation program created by the Clinton administration, has been canceled outright. Federal funding of post-disaster mitigation efforts designed to protect people and property from the next disaster has been cut in half, and now communities across the country must compete for pre-disaster mitigation dollars. [ Baltimore City Paper, 9/29/04 ]

Ø In 2003 White House Slashed Mitigation Programs In Half. In 2003, Congress approved a White House proposal to cut FEMA's Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) in half. Previously, the federal government was committed to invest 15 percent of the recovery costs of a given disaster in mitigating future problems. Under the Bush formula, the feds now cough up only 7.5 percent. Such post-disaster mitigation efforts, specialists say, are a crucial way of minimizing future losses. [ Gambit Weekly, 9/28/04 ]

Bush Continuing To Propose Cuts To Army Corps of Engineers. The Army Corps of Engineers will be cut in 2006. Bushs 2005 budget proposal called for a 13 percent reduction in the Army Corps of Engineers budget, down to $4 billion from $4.6 billion in fiscal 2004. [Associated Press, 2/6/05; Congressional Quarterly Online, 2/3/04]

Under Bush, FEMA Reverted To Pre-Clinton Status As One Of The Worst Agencies. Former President Clinton appointed James L. Witt to take over FEMA after its poor response to Hurricane Andrew. Witt adopted recommendations and FEMA was described as an agency reborn: transformed itself from what many considered to be the worst federal agency to among the best. But FEMA under the Bush administration has destroyed carefully constructed efforts.
After the 9/11 attacks the agencys inspector general in 2003 criticized portions of FEMAs response, citing difficulties in delivering timely and effective mortgage and rental assistance to those in need. [ USA Today, 6/1/2005 ]

2. STATES FORCED TO CARRY MORE OF THE BURDEN

States Expected To Shoulder More Of The Burden In Emergency Management With Fewer Funds. The federal focus on terrorism preparedness has left states with an increased responsibility to provide support for natural disasters and emergencies, noted a report released by the National Emergency Management Association (NEMA) this summer. State budget shortfalls have given emergency management programs less to work with, at a time when more is expected of them. In fiscal year 2004, the average budget for a state emergency management agency was $40.8 million, a 23 percent reduction from fiscal year 2003. [ Gambit Weekly, 9/28/04 ]

Bush Tried to Cut Federal Percentage of Large-Scale Natural Disaster Preparedness. The administration made a failed attempt to cut the federal percentage of large-scale natural disaster preparedness expenditures. Since the 1990s, the federal government has paid 75 percent of such costs, with states and municipalities funding the other 25 percent. The White House's attempt to reduce the federal contribution to 50 percent was defeated in Congress. [ Gambit Weekly, 9/28/04 ]

3. BUSH CRIPPLED HURRICANE PREPAREDNESS IN LOUISIANA

Bush Opposed Necessary Funding For Hurricane Preparedness In Louisiana. The Louisiana congressional delegation urged Congress earlier this year to dedicate a stream of federal money to Louisiana's coast, only to be opposed by the White House. Ultimately a deal was struck to steer $540 million to the state over four years. The total coast of coastal repair work is estimated to be $14 billion. In its budget, the Bush administration also had proposed a significant reduction in funding for southeast Louisiana's chief hurricane protection project. Bush proposed $10.4 million, a sixth of what local officials say they need. [Newhouse News Service, 8/31/05]

Republican Budget Cut New Orleans Army Corps Of Engineers Funding By A Record $71.2 Million. In fiscal year 2006, the New Orleans district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is bracing for a record $71.2 million reduction in federal funding. It would be the largest single-year funding loss ever for the New Orleans district, Corps officials said. I've been here over 30 years and I've never seen this level of reduction, said Al Naomi, project manager for the New Orleans district. The cuts mean major hurricane and flood protection projects will not be awarded to local engineering firms.
Money is so tight the New Orleans district instituted a hiring freeze. The freeze is the first of its kind in about 10 years, said Marcia Demma, chief of the Corps' Programs Management Branch. [New Orleans City Business, 6/6/05]

Landrieu Called Bushs Funding Priorities Shortsided. Landrieu said the Bush Administration is not making Corps of Engineers funding a priority. I think it's extremely shortsighted, Landrieu said. When the Corps of Engineers'
budget is cut, Louisiana bleeds. These projects are literally life-and-death projects to the people of south Louisiana and they are (of) vital economic interest to the entire nation. [New Orleans City Business, 6/6/05]

Emergency Preparedness Director Furious With Project Cuts. A study to determine ways to protect the region from a Category 5 hurricane has been shelved for now. Terry Tullier, the New Orleans emergency preparedness director, said he was furious but not surprised to hear that study had been cut from the Bush budget. Im all for the war effort, but every time I think about the $87 billion being spent on rebuilding Iraq, I ask: What about us?
he said. Somehow we need to make a stronger case that this is not Des Moines, Iowa, that we are so critical that if it hits the fan in New Orleans, everything this side of the Rockies will feel the economic shock waves. [Times-Picayune, 9/22/04; New Orleans City Business, 6/6/05]

Flood Protection Projects Put On Hold Because Of Republicans 2006 Budget.
One of the hardest-hit areas of the New Orleans district's budget is the Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Project. SELA's budget is being drained from $36.5 million awarded in 2005 to $10.4 million suggested for
2006 by the House of Representatives and the president. The Army Corps of Engineers in New Orleans has identified $35 million in projects to build and improve levees, floodwalls and pumping stations in St. Bernard, Orleans, Jefferson and St. Charles parishes. Those projects in a line item where funding is scheduled to be cut from $5.7 million this year to $2.9 million in 2006. We don't have the money to put the work in the field, and that's the problem, Naomi said. [New Orleans City Business, 6/6/05]

Ø Senator Landrieu Urged Action After SELA Budget Slashed. Louisianas congressional delegation assured local officials they would seek significant increases for SELA. We could have lost 100,000 lives had Hurricane Ivan hit the mouth of the (Mississippi) River before it turned, said Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., alluding to last years storm that largely spared Louisiana but devastated parts of Alabama and Florida. God has been good, but one of these days a hurricane is going to come and, if we dont get projects . . .
finished, were sitting ducks, she said. [Times-Picayune, 3/11/05]

4. NATIONAL GUARD AND COAST GUARD UNDERFUNDED AND OVERSTRETCHED

LOUISIANA GUARD WARNED OF EQUIPMENT SHORTAGES BEFORE KATRINA

Louisiana National Guard Said Before Katrina That It Needed Equipment Back
>From Iraq If It Is To Respond To A Natural Disaster. The National Guard
needs that equipment back home to support the homeland security mission, said Lt. Colonel Pete Schneider with the LA National Guard. You've got combatant commanders over there who need it they say they need it, they don't want to lose what they have, and we certainly understand that it's a matter of us educating that combatant commander, we need it back here as well, Col. Schneider said. [ABC 26 WGNO, 8/1/05]

NATIONAL GUARD STRETCHED THIN, UNABLE TO FULFILL DUTIES AT HOME

Mississippi National Guard Concerned About Strain of War In Iraq: Officials Say We Need Our People To Respond To Katrina. Missing the personnel is the big thing in this particular event. We need our people, said Lt. Andy Thaggard, a spokesman for the Mississippi National Guard, which has a brigade of more than 4,000 troops in central Iraq. Louisiana also has about 3,000 Guard troops in Baghdad. [Washington Post, 8/31/05]

Iraq Has Left National Guard Units At Home Short Of Equipment. Already suffering from manpower shortages, the National Guards overstretched forces are being confronted with another problem: not enough equipment to supply Guard troops at home. To fully equip troops in Iraq, the Pentagon has stripped local Guard units of about 24,000 pieces of equipment. That has left Guard units at home, already seriously short of gear. [Detroit Free Press, 6/13/05]

Governors Say Long Deployments Leaving Their States Vulnerable. [S]tate officials think continued deployments will have an effect on people who sign up for or remain in the Minnesota National Guard. At a National Governor's Association meeting...some governors criticized the burden of repeated deployment, saying that the troops' absence leaves their states unprotected against things like natural disasters. Officials in Idaho and Montana have said they are unprepared if forest fires hit their states this summer. [AP, 8/10/05]

5. COAST GUARDS RESPONSIBILITIES INCREASING WITHOUT ADEQUATE FUNDS

Coast Guard Gave Congress List of $919 Million in Unfunded Priorities. The Coast Guard has given Congress a $919 million wish list of programs and hardware not funded in the Bush Administration's fiscal 2006 budget request.
For the first time, the Coast Guard has sent Congressional representatives an unfunded priorities list - a tally of needed items not included in the fiscal 2006 request. The list includes an additional $637 million for the service's Deepwater recapitalization program; $11.6 million for helicopter repairs; $4 million to increase aviation maritime patrol hours, and $59 million to renovate shore stations. [Journal of Commerce Online, 5/11/05]

Coast Guard Faced With Helicopter Problems. The head of the US Coast Guard told Congress his equipment is failing at unacceptable rates. Despite increases in spending on maintenance, the agency's older large craft -- called cutters -- experience equipment failures capable of ruining a mission almost 50 percent of the time, according to Coast Guard officials. Further, the agency's HH-65 helicopters suffered a rate of 329 mishaps per 100,000 flight hours in 2004, way over the Federal Aviation Administration's acceptable standard of 1 mishap per 100,000 hours. [UPI, 6/10/05; USA Today, 7/6/05]

Commandant Says Coast Guard Short On Resources. Coast Guard Commandant Adm.
Thomas H. Collins said, Do we have more business than we have resources?
Yes. The Coast Guard has put the cost of implementing safety regulations laid out by Congress at $7.3 billion over the next ten years. The Bush administration only asked for $46 million for aid to the ports in the 2005 budget. [Budget of the United States, www.omb.gov ; House Approps Cmte Transcript, 3/31/04; Washington Post, 4/2/03; Boston Globe, 6/30/04]


Despite Warnings, Washington Failed to Fund Levee Projects

In late May, the New Orleans district of the Army Corps of Engineers formally notified Washington that hurricane storm surges could knock out two of the big pumping stations that must operate night and day even under normal conditions to keep the city dry.

Also, the Corps said, several levees had settled and would soon need to be raised. And it reminded Washington that an ambitious flood-control study proposed four years before remained just that — a written proposal never put into action for lack of funding.


Huston Chronicle, 12/01/01 KEEPING ITS HEAD ABOVE WATER -New Orleans faces doomsday scenario

New Orleans is sinking.
And its main buffer from a hurricane, the protective Mississippi River delta, is quickly eroding away, leaving the historic city perilously close to disaster.
So vulnerable, in fact, that earlier this year the Federal Emergency Management Agency ranked the potential damage to New Orleans as among the three likeliest, most castastrophic disasters facing this country.
The other two? A massive earthquake in San Francisco, and, almost prophetically, a terrorist attack on New York City.
The New Orleans hurricane scenario may be the deadliest of all.
In the face of an approaching storm, scientists say, the city's less-than-adequate evacuation routes would strand 250,000 people or more, and probably kill one of 10 left behind as the city drowned under 20 feet of water. Thousands of refugees could land in Houston.


There's a few, I'll follow up with more later.

[edit on 5-9-2005 by CatHerder]



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 08:26 PM
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aircraft recon into Katrina:
www.noaanews.noaa.gov...



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 09:53 PM
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Officials Warned Residents: You'll Be On Your Own



Before residents had ever heard the words "Hurricane Katrina," the New Orleans TIMES-PICAYUNE ran a story warning residents: If you stay behind during a big storm, you'll be on your own!

Editors at TIMES-PICAYUNE on Monday called for every official at the Federal Emergency Management Agency to be fired. In an open letter to President Bush, the paper said: "Our people deserved rescuing. Many who could have been were not. That's to the government's shame."

But the TIMES-PICAYUNE published a story on July 24, 2005 stating: City, state and federal emergency officials are preparing to give a historically blunt message: "In the event of a major hurricane, you're on your own."

Staff writer Bruce Nolan reported some 7 weeks before Katrina: "In scripted appearances being recorded now, officials such as Mayor Ray Nagin, local Red Cross Executive Director Kay Wilkins and City Council President Oliver Thomas drive home the word that the city does not have the resources to move out of harm's way an estimated 134,000 people without transportation."

"In the video, made by the anti-poverty agency Total Community Action, they urge those people to make arrangements now by finding their own ways to leave the city in the event of an evacuation.

"You're responsible for your safety, and you should be responsible for the person next to you," Wilkins said in an interview. "If you have some room to get that person out of town, the Red Cross will have a space for that person outside the area. We can help you."


cjf

posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 11:26 PM
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National Geographic ‘called’ the event in and October 2004 article including some of the then hypothetical descriptive detail we now know as fact (darn close to home and interesting article)

October 2004 National Geographic archive

This was the beginning of some signs of ‘politics before people’



Nagin said late Saturday that he's having his legal staff look into whether he can order a mandatory evacuation of the city, a step he's been hesitant to do because of potential liability on the part of the city for closing hotels and other businesses.
The Times-Picayune Agust 28, 2005 edition



.



posted on Sep, 6 2005 @ 10:26 AM
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This is just a draft introduction to the great information I'm getting from you guys. Please keep the info coming.


Five thousand years ago the ground on which New Orleans would later be built was under the water in the Gulf of Mexico aproximately 30 miles south of the Gulf Coast but a couple of miles south of a barrier island formation known by geologists as Pine Island. The sea level was not rising so fast as glaciers around the world had stopped melting and the Mississippi River was located farther west it would be about 1000 years later that the Mississippi changed course. When it did sediment was deposited which trapped water between the existing Gulf coast forming Pontchartrain Bay. Later subsidence would create Lake Borgne and other geological features that you can see today.

Even as long ago as 1927, the year of the great Mississippi flood which prompted the building of an extensive levee system, the Mississippi was still laying down sediment, reclaiming the Gulf and extending the land either side of that great river.

In the intervening years since 1927 this long history of natural land reclamation has been halted and then slowly reversed. The Levees along the Mississippi rob the surrounding land of new sediment while new ship channels, oil and gas cannals, hurricanes, and subsidence have meant that the 4 thousand year long drive of natural land reclamation has been reversed and the land has started to disappear.

This erosion is significant. By the 1940s the rate of loss grew slowly to about 14 square miles a year, by the late 1960s the rate of erosion had increased rapidly to a high of 42 square miles a year, before slowing to between 25 and 35 square miles a year today. It is estimated that in the last 100 years an area the size of Rhode Island has been lost.

Couple this with the facts that New Orleans is 8ft to 11ft below sea level, that because it is built on 100 feet of soft silt, sand, and clay, it is sinking 3 ft per century, and that sea levels are projected to rise by 3 ft per century due to global warming and you can see the precarious nature of the very existence of New Orleans.

Some scientists have projected that within a hundred years man might lose the battle with nature and New Orleans will be lost to flooding anyway, even that the Mississippi might again change it's course. And that was before Katrina.

It was in 1718 that Jean Baptiste le Moyne, sieur de Bienville, settled and founded La Nouvelle-Orléans, because it made an ideal spot for trading. However, it has always been susceptable to disease, flooding, and Hurricanes. In 1763 it was ceded to the Spanish. In 1795, Spain granted the United States "Right of Deposit" in New Orleans, allowing Americans to use the city's port facilities. When Napolean conquered Spain in 1801, Lousiana reverted back to French rule but two years later Napolean sold it to the USA for $15 million (approximately $193 million today) in what is known as the Louisiana Purchase (The name belies the fact that 529,911,680 acres were sold in a great swathe of what is central USA today, from parts of Montana and North Dakota down to Louisiana. New Orleans had a population of about 10,000 people at this time. By 1840, New Orleans was the fourth largest city in the USA with a population of around 102,000.

Because the land is low lying and marshy most building up until the beginning of the 20th century was on the slightly higher ground along old natural river levees and bayous, giving the city a crescent shape. Levees typically began as natural structures, created by the silt deposited by large rivers like the Mississippi when they periodically overflow their banks. The formal levee system in New Orleans dates to about 1890, when the Orleans Levee District was created.

In the 1910s inventor and engineer Albert B Wood put into action his plan to drain the city. All rain water was pumped up to the canals which drain into Lake Pontchartrain. Wood's pumps and drainage allowed the city to expand greatly in area. However, pumping of groundwater from underneath the city has resulted in subsidence. This subsidence greatly increased the flood risk. Another interesting fact is that some of Wood's pumps had been in almost continuous use in New Orleans up until Katrina.

The Great Flood of 1927 is another event which should interest here. As the flood approached New Orleans, the Caernarvon levee was dynamited in an effort to protect the city. This prevented New Orleans from experiencing serious damage but destroyed much of the marsh below the city exacerbating the problem of coastal erosion. After the catastrophic Mississippi River flood of 1927, most levees in the U.S. were fortified by the Federal Army Corps of Engineers make them stronger though some levees were built by local governments. Since 1927 the improvements to New Orleans's levee system have been piecemeal because of cost.

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I've used Wiki a fair bit (not copy and paste) and will credit appropriately. when finished.



[edit on 6-9-2005 by John bull 1]

[edit on 6-9-2005 by John bull 1]



posted on Sep, 7 2005 @ 11:02 PM
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A related article regarding a company in Vancouver BC (Canada).

B.C. company predicts global disaster scenarios

A British Columbia mapping company says it has the technology to predict the kind of devastation that a natural disaster could wreak upon a city and its population.

The technology is being used around the world, and could save lives if implemented in a disaster preparedness program, according to the company.

Using information from aerial photos or satellite imagery, Vancouver-based Aero Geometrics creates topographic maps and 3-dimensional imagery, illustrating what can happen to an area in a worst-case disaster scenario.

A computer model of Miami, Fla. shows how quickly a major flood would swallow the city's downtown core.

"Virtually all of Miami would be gone in no time," company president Tim Daly told CTV Vancouver.

Six months ago, the company made a presentation in Biloxi, Miss., yet no one there took the bait.

"They didn't have the wisdom to say, yeah, we could have used that," said Daly, adding that his technology would also have helped New Orleans.

"We could easily simulate breaking the levee and watching the water flood in, and where it would go."


Aero Geometrics' clients include governments, mining and forestry sectors -- and even the U.S. army, which the company advises as to what terrain soldiers could expect to tread upon in Baghdad.

(more)



posted on Sep, 7 2005 @ 11:10 PM
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Should we then repost relevant articles from Valhalls other thread?



posted on Sep, 8 2005 @ 12:52 AM
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Hi- I'm not sure if this is right to post this here, mods, please move or etc as you see fit, but Soficrow suggested I post this here as well, and to John Bull and Valhall- it's already here in the Katrina thread under Flooded on purpose?

"Ok, I'm so stunned at this one that I need other interpretations of this. Here are two articles, one printed at NOLA/The Times Picayune, right before the hurricane hit, Sunday, August 28, 2005 , and one from The Guardian, which seems as trustworthy as any paper that I know of, on 9-4-05 .
Ok, here goes. Just copying tidbits, but here are links too. The bold is just me, freaking out.
From NOLA
"Levee board officials around the area closed or prepared to close floodgates to protect low-lying areas. The Orleans Parish Levee District said it would close floodgates and sever Louisiana 11 and U.S. 90 at today at 6 p.m., cutting that route to or from the city. Most other floodgates already were closed. "
NOLA article
actually, that whole article is really interesting in retrospect. So, they shut off evac routes, before the storm even hit.

And here's what I don't understand.
This is from The Guardian, and it's written about like it is common knowledge.
"Williams only left his apartment after the authorities took the decision to flood his district in an apparent attempt to sluice out some of the water that had submerged a neighbouring district. Like hundreds of others he had heard the news of the decision to flood his district on the radio. The authorities had given people in the district until 5pm on Tuesday to get out - after that they would open the floodgates.

'We thought we could live without electricity for a few weeks because we had food. But then they told us they were opening the floodgates,' said Arineatta Walker, who fled the area with her daughter and two grandchildren.

'So about two o'clock we went on to the streets and we asked the army, "Where can we go?". And they said, "Just take off because there's no one going to come back for you." They kicked my family out of there. If I knew how to hotwire a car I would have,' Walker said." observer.guardian.co.uk...

Has anyone known that the flooding of the desperately poor 9th ward area was purposeful? Can this be true? Or am I reading this wrong? Was the army there already on Tuesday? So confused."



posted on Sep, 8 2005 @ 03:14 AM
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Originally posted by loam
Should we then repost relevant articles from Valhalls other thread?


No, when I come to collate I will search through Val's research thread and pull everything that is useful.



posted on Sep, 8 2005 @ 03:19 AM
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Thanks Rise and Fall though because this covers details from after Katrina was born it is in Val's area. I feel sure she she'll use it though. I certainly had no idea that the flood gates were openned.

To do that without enforced evacuation is irresponsible.



posted on Sep, 8 2005 @ 04:17 PM
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Two eerily prescient articles from Scientific American & National Geographic:

From Scientific American: October 2001 Issue


New Orleans is a disaster waiting to happen. The city lies below sea level, in a bowl bordered by levees that fend off Lake Pontchartrain to the north and the Mississippi River to the south and west. And because of a damning confluence of factors, the city is sinking further, putting it at increasing flood risk after even minor storms. The low-lying Mississippi Delta, which buffers the city from the gulf, is also rapidly disappearing. A year from now another 25 to 30 square miles of delta marsh--an area the size of Manhattan--will have vanished. An acre disappears every 24 minutes. Each loss gives a storm surge a clearer path to wash over the delta and pour into the bowl, trapping one million people inside and another million in surrounding communities. Extensive evacuation would be impossible because the surging water would cut off the few escape routes. Scientists at Louisiana State University (L.S.U.), who have modeled hundreds of possible storm tracks on advanced computers, predict that more than 100,000 people could die. The body bags wouldn't go very far.

A direct hit is inevitable. Large hurricanes come close every year. In 1965 Hurricane Betsy put parts of the city under eight feet of water. In 1992 monstrous Hurricane Andrew missed the city by only 100 miles. In 1998 Hurricane Georges veered east at the last moment but still caused billions of dollars of damage. At fault are natural processes that have been artificially accelerated by human tinkering--levying rivers, draining wetlands, dredging channels and cutting canals through marshes. Ironically, scientists and engineers say the only hope is more manipulation, although they don't necessarily agree on which proposed projects to pursue. Without intervention, experts at L.S.U. warn, the protective delta will be gone by 2090. The sunken city would sit directly on the sea--at best a troubled Venice, at worst a modern-day Atlantis.


www.sciam.com...

From National Geographic: October 2004 Issue


It was a broiling August afternoon in New Orleans, Louisiana, the Big Easy, the City That Care Forgot. Those who ventured outside moved as if they were swimming in tupelo honey. Those i[nside paid silent homage to the man who invented air-conditioning as they watched TV "storm teams" warn of a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico. Nothing surprising there: Hurricanes in August are as much a part of life in this town as hangovers on Ash Wednesday.

But the next day the storm gathered steam and drew a bead on the city. As the whirling maelstrom approached the coast, more than a million people evacuated to higher ground. Some 200,000 remained, however—the car-less, the homeless, the aged and infirm, and those die-hard New Orleanians who look for any excuse to throw a party.

The storm hit Breton Sound with the fury of a nuclear warhead, pushing a deadly storm surge into Lake Pontchartrain. The water crept to the top of the massive berm that holds back the lake and then spilled over. Nearly 80 percent of New Orleans lies below sea level—more than eight feet below in places—so the water poured in. A liquid brown wall washed over the brick ranch homes of Gentilly, over the clapboard houses of the Ninth Ward, over the white-columned porches of the Garden District, until it raced through the bars and strip joints on Bourbon Street like the pale rider of the Apocalypse. As it reached 25 feet (eight meters) over parts of the city, people climbed onto roofs to escape it.

Thousands drowned in the murky brew that was soon contaminated by sewage and industrial waste. Thousands more who survived the flood later perished from dehydration and disease as they waited to be rescued. It took two months to pump the city dry, and by then the Big Easy was buried under a blanket of putrid sediment, a million people were homeless, and 50,000 were dead. It was the worst natural disaster in the history of the United States.

When did this calamity happen? It hasn't—yet. But the doomsday scenario is not far-fetched. The Federal Emergency Management Agency lists a hurricane strike on New Orleans as one of the most dire threats to the nation, up there with a large earthquake in California or a terrorist attack on New York City. Even the Red Cross no longer opens hurricane shelters in the city, claiming the risk to its workers is too great.


Bold added for tragic heedlessness.

www3.nationalgeographic.com...

Shame not many subscribe to or listen to these very informative magazines, Congress & the White house could have really used these particular magazine issues in their various lobbies. Missed opportunities for sure.



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