Wednesday, July 19, 2006

New Orleans: Not Quite Stormproof

New Orleans Flood Graphic

Inside a sprawling warehouse on the outskirts of Vicksburg, Mississippi, a 15,000-square-foot model of New Orleans is getting very, very wet. Since February, researchers with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have been re-creating Hurricane Katrina’s wrath in miniature. Their goal has been to emulate the size and speed of the storm’s waves to understand why the levees crumbled and how to fortify them against future storms.

One startling finding, revealed in a 6,000-page tome released in June, is that nearly two thirds of the flooding could have been prevented had the Corps simply fortified the weak soil conditions that ultimately caused the levees to collapse. Since then, the Corps has installed “T-walls” around the levees that will bolster them against smaller storms, yet its long-term defense plan for Katrina-style nightmares, illustrated here, could be at least another decade, and potentially billions of dollars, away from completion.

Check out the article at Popular Science.

Check out the animated movie illustrating New Orleans's latest stormproofing strategy.

That's a lot of money to spend on one city...

1 comment :

Anonymous said...

Hey Dude,

Just wanted to drop in and say hi. Hope everything is going good. Keep up the good blog I have been looking at it from time to time and I enjoy it.

Matt Deroche