Category Archives: Global change

AnnArbor.Crowdmap.com – collaborative analysis of storm impact

AnnArbor.Crowdmap.com is an online system which has been collecting storm reports from the May 2011 flooding in Ann Arbor, as well as having in it previous information from past flood events and other incidents in Ann Arbor where there was widespread problems.

Crowdmap is a tool that allows you to crowdsource information and visualize it on a map and timeline.

I've typed in a bunch of these, but if you notice a news report of flooding, sewer spills, landslides, closed roads or fish flopping around on the road please add in a dot on the map with a link.

Picture 20

The image shows storm-to-date stormwater related incidents in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area – I will leave it to the world to decide how far away "surrounding" is, but certainly the Huron River watershed is in scope, and I suspect that the area to watch is roughly the size of the Arborwiki catchment basin.

More about Crowdmap at Tech Cocktail.  A 2009 Business Insider story covers eBay founder Pierre Omidyar's investment in Ushahidi, the system that Crowdmap was built out of. 

quake lakes and Dave’s Landslide Blog

After an earthquake, landslides block river valleys, causing temporary lakes to form. Sometimes these lakes hold for a long time; in other cases, the earthen dam fails, causing flooding downstream.

The single best blog on the topic is Dave’s Landslide Blog, from Dave Petley, who is the Wilson Professor at Durham University, UK. He’s doing reporting on the Tangjiashan dam, and I won’t even try to be up to date with that.

As a previous example:

Lake Sarez in Tajikistan is the result of a 1911 earthquake, forming the 600 meter long Usoi landslide dam. An article in GeoScienceWorld by Schuster and Alford discusses the risks of the dam failing. A 2003 risk mitigation project installed remote warning sensors to alert villagers of risks detected.

Quake Lake in Montana formed after a 1959 earthquake; the Billings Gazette captured memories of it in 1999. The US Army Corps of Engineers was quickly put into service to build a spillway for the dam.