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Bad Barry

Bad Barry

Author: Hugh Bollinger/Friday, July 12, 2019/Categories: natural history, photography, space science, sustainability, environment, climate change

                                      Tropical Storm Barry Approaching the Gulf Coast (credit: NOAA)

Tropical Storm Barry has begun to arrive at the Gulf Coast. If predictions are correct, he could produce a torrent of rainfall to the already saturated coastlines of Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida.

   Tropical Storm Barry, Predicted Path 7/12/2019 to 7/15/2019 (credit: NWS-NOAA)

Barry is a slow-moving storm and rainfall will intensify over the entire weekend. Even before the storm actually hits the coast, local news has shown that flooding already is occurring in parts of New Orleans. Nine inches (9") of torrential rainfall that fell in a matter of four hours in advance of the actual storm.

The real unknown is what will be the affect of any storm surge, if it occurs. The Mississippi River is swollen from major flood from rainfall in the upper-Midwest this spring. When Barry's gulf waves hit the river system, this water will only add to the scale of the volume already within the river. Some are calling this a "never before seen problem" which could produce floods like those of Hurricane Katrina.

Climate change models have all predicted that intensity of severe weather events will increase. They predicted increased strength of hurricanes and didn't expect a low-intensity, slow moving, storm like Barry might produce the volumes of rainfall that could now fall. Tropical Storm Barry could become a very 'bad boy' if the NOAA predictions become reality.



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