Kate Sherren

Landscapes - People - Global change

Month: December 2018

Flooding and adaptation on the Wolastoq

Saint John River flooding near Maugerville, Dec 26, 2018.

Saint John River flooding near Maugerville, Dec 26, 2018.

Weather was fine for my drives back and forth to Fredericton for Christmas, but the rains that had come a few days before were clearly taking their toll. The Saint John River (Wələstəq) commonly sees spring flooding, particularly bad this past year, but Christmas floods are not common.  I took the 105 from Sheffield to Fredericton both ways, and the flooding along Maugerville and the Nashwaak looked like spring, save the ice pans in the river.

It was also interesting, however, to see residents taking action. After the last floods, the government offered to buy severely damaged homes (>80% of assessed value in damage), or pay out a higher amount (15% more to help with moving, raising, etc) if the homeowners would sign a document agreeing never to ask for flood compensation from the government again. I wonder if this monetary incentive to adapt in situ was the reason for some of the works I saw along the 105 during my drive. The Saint John River is still affected by Bay of Fundy tides at this point, so sea level rise will only make this area more affected in future. Whether these adaptations are fit-for-purpose remains to be seen.

Land built up and home raised with new foundations along Rte 105, Dec 26, 2018.

Land built up and home raised with new foundations along Rte 105, Dec 26, 2018.

Based on the amount of land disturbance, this house may have been moved back as well as up. Rte 105, Dec 26, 2018.

Based on the amount of land disturbance, this house may have been moved back as well as up. Rte 105, Dec 26, 2018.

Apparent new hill for this pretty little house to perch on, Rte 105, Dec 26, 2018.Apparent new hill for this pretty little house to perch on, Rte 105, Dec 26, 2018.

Apparent new hill for this pretty little house to perch on, Rte 105, Dec 26, 2018.

Riprap and raising, for this house, Rte 105, Dec 26, 2018.

Riprap for this house, possibly a new construction, Rte 105, Dec 26, 2018.

 

Bird Watcher’s Digest coverage

Quick Takes coverage of Space to Roost in the Nov/Dec 2018 issue of Bird Water's Digest.

Quick Takes coverage of Space to Roost in the Nov/Dec 2018 issue of Bird Water’s Digest.

Congratulations to MES candidate Jaya Fahey, and collaborators from her MES sponsors and Mitacs host, Bird Studies Canada, for the coverage of Space to Roost in the recent issue of Bird Watcher’s Digest. Our innovative approach to negotiating and motivating high-tide beach sharing for migrating shorebirds has received interest from places like Newfoundland and Georgia and we hope to see more examples of this kind of collaborative conservation in future as a result.

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