Boating in Canada News

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29 November 2006

Sewage problem in Great Lakes

Nov/06: Ontario and American cities around the Great Lakes are failing to keep sewage out of the Great Lakes, suggests a study by the Sierra Legal Defence Fund, a Canadian environmental group. The Great Lakes, one of the world's most important freshwater ecosystems, provides drinking water for millions. Windsor had the worst record on the Canadian side. Sudbury, Kingston, Hamilton, Sarnia, Toronto and the Niagara Region rated below-average. Kitchener-Waterloo, York and Durham regions refused to participate. The main culprit for Canadian cities was the frequency of sewer overflows due to antiquated systems.
(CBC story)

18 November 2006

Water Levels falling in Canada

Nov/06: Canada's water levels are threatened, according to recent government reports. The problem is being blamed on lower precipitation, less snow and snow melt, and higher evaporation due to global warming. Warming temperatures reduce winter ice coverage, increase evaporation, and reduce river flows. Lower flows in the Athabasca River will affect oil sands development in Alberta. Lower water flows in the Great Lakes affects hydro-electricity production, tourism, recreational boating industry, and the loss of commercial shipping revenue - for every 1 inch drop, a 1,000-foot freighter loses 270 tons of cargo. Great Lakes levels began dropping after 1998 - Lakes Superior, Huron and Michigan are currently well below normal. International Joint Commission’s final report says less than one per cent of Great Lakes water is renewed annually by precipitation, surface water runoff, and inflow from groundwater sources.
(Environment Canada: Water Levels | | "Northern Ontario Business")

4 November 2006

Live Weather On the Web

Oct/06: Online weather information has progressed a long way. ( Canadian Marine Weather)
Canada: Environment Canada has created the terrific Canadian weather radar images showing current, and animated radar maps across the country. You can easily see if a rainstorm is imminent or 3 hours away. Together with free email forecasts, weather services have never been better.
U.S.A.: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL) has a project with Aimee Weber Studio in Second Life (due to open in mid November). This features a three dimensional visualization of current weather on display at the Science Center.
World: Google Earth is a broadband, 3D application (free download) showing maps from any angle with custom overlays. Type in your address and fly from space to your house. Request directions and it "drives" there as if you were in a low-flying plane. Awesome. A few overlays you can add: Canadian Weather Links, Google Earth , Google Earth Cloud overlay , Google Earth Radar overlay, Google Earth Blog, CBS Seismic Monitor
real-time (must have Google Earth), USCG Earthquake monitor , Visible Shipwrecks (GE forum)