Weather stations better predict flood, drought

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client University of Saskatchewan building better measurement networks to forecast flooding

Scientists inspect a weather station, in front of a mountain dusted by snow. One science is atop a ladder; the other researcher closely looks on.The University of Saskatchewan, Centre for Hydrology is helping to build better measurement networks in the central Canadian province, in order to improve flood warning in the Rockies.

Weather technology is being installed at these mountain weather stations to measure "everything from temperature and wind speed to humidity and precipitation."

"Floods... show us you can't have too many measurements in the mountains of what's coming down," says John Pomeroy. The hydrologist directs University of Saskatchewan, Centre for Hydrology and serves as a Canada research chair in water resources and climate change.

Beyond floods are water supply issues.

In addition to anticipating floods and droughts, these telemetry stations are expected to significantly enhance the day-to-day management of water supply on the prairies. The Rockies are the primary water sources for the fertile agricultural provinces. Information collected is directly shared with Alberta Environment, Environment Canada and organizations with an interest in public safety such as the Canadian Avalanche Association as well as scientists who are studying the interaction between forests and snow.

Read additional details in the Calgary Herald article by Colette Derworiz.

Note: The university has since established the Global Institute for Water Security to apply its water science research data, powered by innovative decision-making tools like KISTERS Big Data technology stack, to plan for water sustainability in places where climate change is dramatically affecting the environment.

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