It’s that time of year again when people start thinking about spring time flooding, especially folks that reside or have property up around Lake Ontario.
The last few years areas around the Lake Ontario shoreline have had to deal with significant flooding and erosion of the shoreline due to higher than normal water levels.
Thankfully International Joint Commission, IJC, that controls the outflow of Lake Ontario and monitors the water levels is currently not concerned at this time about flooding this year around Lake Ontario. Water level of Lake Ontario is about 6″ below the long term average lake level as of the start of March! The lake level is about 3″ lower than it was about a month ago at the end of January and almost two feet lower than it was at the end of February 2020 and the lowest it has been since 2015!
As of December 2020 the IJC had a moderate flood risk, nearly 30% chance of flooding occurring on the shores of Lake Ontario, but as of the start of March the risk of flooding is less than 10%, or classified as a low threat. Why has the flooding risk decreases so much? A drier than average January and February across the Great Lakes basin.
The forecast by the IJC is for the lake water level to rise about 4″ in the month of March but as long as there are not a number of significant precipitation events in the area the concern for flooding in and around Lake Ontario will continue to be low. This is a very welcome change for home/property owners compared to recent years and one they hope continues through 2021 and the years to come!