Bay City Texas, dam failure, dam tsunami, drainage, Earthen dam, flooding, Galveston, groundwater, Gulf of Mexico, Houston, Hurricane Harvey, hurricane safety, induced subsidence, Man-made disasters, Man-made subsidence, Matagorda, oil and gas, petrochemical, petroleum, precipitation, Rain, rainfall, relative sea level, reservoir failure, Sea level, South Texas Nuclear, subsidence, US NRC, US NRC hurricanes
While Hurricane Harvey brought record rainfall, the Houston area is more prone to flooding due to subsidence largely induced by humans. Land shifting, in conjunction with record rain, could make the earthen reservoir next to the South Texas Nuclear site more prone to failure and can also make drainage more difficult.
usgs circ1182 07 “Houston Galveston Managing coastal subsidence“, Original here: https://pubs.usgs.gov/circ/circ1182/pdf/07Houston.pdf Emphasis our own.
Houston, “Free Enterprise City” by Joe Feagin, summary: http://www.sjsu.edu/people/saul.cohn/courses/city/s1/Free%20Enterprise%20City.ppt
Houston area preliminary rain totals – https://nwschat.weather.gov/p.php?pid=201708290105-KHGX-NOUS44-PNSHGX
“The surface elevation of the site ranges from about El. 32 to 34 ft mean sea level (MSL), which is equivalent to National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1929 (NGVD 29), at the north boundary to between El. 15 ft to 20 ft MSL at the south boundary… A major feature of the site is the Main Cooling Reservoir (MCR), which is formed by a 12.4-mile-long earthfill embankment constructed above the natural ground surface. The MCR has a surface area of 7000 acres with a normal maximum operating level of El. 49 ft MSL.” https://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1204/ML12048A985.pdf. https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2017/08/25/hurricane-harvey-targets-south-texas-nuclear-power-station-with-high-dam-failure-vulnerability/
Precipitation at Bay City which is the closest to the South Texas Nuclear Project site which could be found. Wadsworth is a bit closer.
Ground shifting according to the TXBC (Bay City, Texas) monitor:
River Gage at Bay City, Texas
River Discharge at Bay City, Texas
Engelkemeir et al. (2010) “speculate on the possibility that the active elevation of salt domes, mainly at the south and east of the city, may indirectly influence other surface movements including fault movements and subsidence over areas >1 km2.” (R. Engelkemeir et al. , Tectonophysics 490 (2010) 47–54)
“Surface deformation in Houston, Texas using GPS
Richard Engelkemeir a, Shuhab D. Khan b,⁎, Kevin Burke b
a Schlumberger Information Solutions, Houston, TX 77056,
b Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Houston, Houston, TX 77204Tectonophysics 490 (2010) 47–54” https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Shuhab_Khan/publication/223395967_Surface_deformation_in_Houston_Texas_using_GPS/links/0c96051ce35954888f000000/Surface-deformation-in-Houston-Texas-using-GPS.pdf
Many thanks to FC of the Louisiana Sinkhole Bugle for the Bay City precipitation, river stage and discharge data link: https://lasinkhole.wordpress.com