South­west had lots of soil mois­ture be­fore win­ter freeze-up

The Southwest Booster - - NEWS -

he Wa­ter Se­cu­rity Agency is high­light­ing high sub­soil mois­ture lev­els in south­ern Saskatchew­an could con­trib­ute to a higher risk of flood­ing in the spring of 2015.

The Wa­ter Se­cu­rity Agency's 2014 Fall Con­di­tions Re­port, based on con­di­tions as of Nov. 6, notes that larger wet­land ar­eas re­main near full and many creeks are run­ning at near or record lev­els for this time of year. Most ar­eas of the prov­ince re­ceived 150 to 200 per cent above the nor­mal amount of pre­cip­i­ta­tion on what was an al­ready sat­u­rated land­scape.

"Record rain­fall was re­ceived across much of south­ern Saskatchew­an

Tdur­ing the first half of the 2014 grow­ing sea­son," the re­port states. "While much of the prov­ince has ex­pe­ri­enced near nor­mal pre­cip­i­ta­tion over the past two months, which has low­ered top­soil mois­ture con­di­tions, much of the sub­soil across the grain belt is thought to re­main near fully charged. This will re­duce in­fil­tra­tion ca­pac­i­ties in the spring of 2015."

The re­port notes that many por­tions of Saskatchew­an are as wet, or wet­ter, than in the fall of 2010.

"Con­se­quently, even a near nor­mal snow­pack could re­sult in above nor­mal runoff and flood­ing dur­ing 2015 spring runoff. Most in­dices at this time are, how­ever, point­ing to­wards a near nor­mal snow­pack this win­ter. While it is much too early to say with any cer­tainty that flood­ing will oc­cur in 2015, much of the grain belt, par­tic­u­larly along the east­ern side of the prov­ince and in the south­west are at a height­ened risk."

A pre­cip­i­ta­tion sum­mary for the prov­ince notes an area south of High­way 13 and west of Grav­el­bourg, re­ceived

150 to 200 per cent of av­er­age an­nual pre­cip­i­ta­tion dur­ing the 2014 grow­ing sea­son. There was also an area near Val Marie that also recorded record pre­cip­i­ta­tion from April 1 to Oct. 31.

All eyes will be on win­ter snow­fall to­tals this win­ter, as a higher snow­pack in cer­tain ar­eas would in­crease the risk of flood­ing in cer­tain ar­eas. Their re­port con­cedes that a se­ries of win­ter pre­cip­i­ta­tion forecasts are call­ing for nor­mal snow­fall to­tals over the next three months, how­ever an En­vi­ron­ment Canada model is pre­dict­ing above nor­mal pre­cip­i­ta­tion from De­cem­ber to Fe­bru­ary.

The Wa­ter Se­cu­rity Agency will con­tinue to mon­i­tor con­di­tions through the win­ter of 2014/15. Be­gin­ning in Fe­bru­ary they will be re­leas­ing the first of their 2015 Spring Runoff Out­look re­ports.

The full Fall Con­di­tions re­port is avail­able at https://www.wsask.ca/

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.