Manitoba Flood Update – Saturday, May 14, 2011 – Selinger Lake grows

Reid Dickie

As you can see in these aerial shots, the deed is done! The road is cut! The invitation to let the Assiniboine bleed has been accepted! Selinger Lake is forming quickly! Our newest lake is named after Manitoba`s premier, Duff Selinger. Now the lies are starting to emerge. The Manitoba government has been crowing about how only 150 homes (a figure the mainstream media unquestioningly re-enforces through repetition to try to make it true) will be affected by the intentional flood as opposed to 500 homes if the river does what it wants. It`s a numbers game they are playing with us. Today`s wrinkle in the game: change the wording from homes to properties (vague is better) and bump the figure to, oh say, 800 properties downstream that would flood if we don`t do it first. It still doesn`t wash.

There are nine Hutterite colonies in the “controlled” flood zone which have more than 150 houses between them. Counting the towns and farms affected, the figure reaches about 500 homes that will actually be flooded intentionally. Try not think about how much human and animal sewage, stored chemicals and other toxins the intentional flood will release into the environment in addition to the amount already mixed in with floodwaters. Warnings about health risks from floodwaters are coming out now, well water is under boil-before-use imperatives and the environment takes another hit for the politicians and the city people. The toxic slurry that will form the Assiniboine when it joins the Red in Winnipeg has to flow right through the city.

Let`s think about why they`d lie. The Red River Floodway only diverts water from the Red River which converges with the Assiniboine in downtown Winnipeg. The controls along the Assiniboine, those being Shellmouth Dam and Portage Diversion, have been exhausted by the time the water passes Portage. After that, it`s smooth sailing. There is nothing to stop the water as it rolls across the flatland to meet the Red.

Here`s the crux: Winnipeg has no defences against the Assiniboine River. Nothing. No floodway, no dike system, nothing. When an unprecedented amount of Assiniboine River water starts coming toward Winnipeg, as it is now, that`s a problem. But the optics are bad when you tell people outside the Perimeter Highway that you`re sacrificing their property for the sake of the city. So the spin doctors took over, applied their logic and everyone is saved! Except, of course, those now living in Selinger Lake. But they`ll get compensation because, as everyone knows, money solves every problem.

Here`s the latest on the numbers game: this afternoon Emergency Measures Minister Steve Ashton said the affected area is now 180 square kilometres, down from the 225 square kilometres believed at risk. Ashton said the reduction is thanks to the work of survey crews in recent days. Umm, Steve, you just broke my BS meter.

I am so hoping I am completely wrong about this and the controlled breach is actually controlled but I have little faith in small and desperate politicians.

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Filed under Flood, Natural Places

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