Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Floods to the left of me, fires to the right
  (+7, -4)
(+7, -4)
  [vote for,

I'm sure even our overseas counterparts have heard about the forest fires which have been going on in the American southwest. More to the point are the floods currently taking place in Texas.

Since there's no way to tell where the next forest fires (or the next floods) will strike, I propose building a series of canals crisscrossing the U.S.. This will bring much needed flood relief to certain areas while bringing water to thristy forests.

As a public works project, there need be no timeline and will surely employ thousands of otherwise jobless people.

Ancillary benefits include:
New waterfront property (increased property taxes help pay for the canals)
New transportation routes (tolls for which help pay for the canals)
New (interesting?) weather patterns

phoenix, Jul 10 2002


       (I'm only annotating so that it doesn't look like phoenix croissanted his own idea....it's a great idea, it's too bad it will, most probably, stay in the WIBNI category and never see an oven.....)
runforrestrun, Jul 10 2002

       (So should I annotate it just so that it doesn't look as though phoenix fishboned his own idea?)
DrCurry, Jul 10 2002

       Makes you wonder why the old canal shipping lanes are so underutilized these days.
RayfordSteele, Jul 10 2002

       First, building waterways are HUGELY expensive. It's a massive proposal. To pay off the land, as you suggest, you'd have to rent property - from the government? I don't want the government owning more land, that's for sure.   

       Last, forest fires are natural. If we'd learn to live with nature better, (instead of trying to work around it, ahem - with waterways), we'd be a lot better off. You see, trying to prevent fires so hard - we let dangerous underbrush grow, creating a perfect HUGE firestarting situation.Forest workers are just now learning how to clear brush naturally using fire - instead of trying just the opposite.   

       And WHY would you want to create new weather patterns - what would happen if those killed thousands of people?! You're mad boy - absolutley mad.
phunknight, Jul 10 2002

       Overall, the environmental cost (in terms of endangered species, water supplies, local climate idiosyncrasies, ecosystems, etc.) of digging the canals would outweigh the cost of an actual fire/flood taking place every once in a while. It would be too expensive, anyway. That said, it does seem awfully cruel that one part of the country is too wet, and the other too dry.   

       Perhaps someone could draw some crop circles in Kansas (pick your state) and attract some Martians to do the job for the US. Perhaps if the fires get bad enough Martians will become spontaneously charitable.   

       And at least in the US, the government owns some land, other land is private... there are entire bureaus devoted to the purchase of private property to permit government projects.
polartomato, Jul 10 2002

       polartomato: Smack me if I'm nutz but I swore that when I read your annotation I read a section as "Perhaps if the fires get bad enough the Martians will become spontaneously combustable."   

       Maybe there's something in that... Spontaneously Combustable Martian Canals...... I see a new movie for George Lucas in that one....
Severian, Jul 10 2002

       Funny, I in turn read, "Smack me in the nutz" in your annotation...
polartomato, Jul 10 2002

       Surely the problem is that the clouds are congregating in the wrong place. What you need is the ability to pull those rain-bearing clouds over the forest fires. Problem solved.
PeterSilly, Jul 10 2002

       <off-base comment> Maybe we just need cloud curfews to stop young renegade clouds from hanging out over the farmland and pissing over the entire place. </obc>
polartomato, Jul 10 2002

       Pipes would be better than canals; canals suffer severely from evaporative loss, and they can only run between areas of near-equal height. Water can be pumped through pipes .....   

       Of course you wouldn't get all those nice watrefront properties. Sorry.
8th of 7, Jul 10 2002

       As a overseas counterpart it irritates me this is baked but not used. It seems to me the only way to get a bit of planatary hope is by baking this sort of things. I have been behaving as a fool since I got here ok? In general people don't like new ideas for the thinking about they take.This one is worth it....
I remember the Dutch finishing the DELTA-works and turning the (Dutch!) hi tech construction boats into scrap, at the same time a Canadian firm was building the same huge boat types for an a like project, the Canadian firm spend twice as much money for half as good tools. Holland spend an almost insane amount for the size of the project, the Canadian project was bigger (as usual) and they sort of discovered the Netherlands after building the same ships.

The point: It takes tools to make, the tools are the same no mater how long your using them for. Boats for a project this size are normally build for a single job and dismantled, Your's can be maintained for 50 jr. (you can do it by land to)
postseti, Jul 10 2002

       Blissmiss: Look on the bright side - you now know what it's like in Manchester without ever having to actually go there. That has to be a bonus.
8th of 7, Jul 10 2002

       [runforrestrun], [DrCurry]: At least one of you knows I don't vote on my own ideas.   

       [phunknight]: "First, building waterways are HUGELY expensive. It's a massive proposal"
Noted in my idea.

       "Last, forest fires are natural."
Under certain circumstances. There's no need to do away with controlled burns. They'll just be more...controlled. Don't take it so seriously - welcome to the HalfBakery.

       [UnaBubba]: Most everything but 'populace/populus' and 'pedant/pendant'.
phoenix, Jul 11 2002

       Well, I can't very well fix it, now can I?
phoenix, Jul 16 2002

       One word for no...mountains.
songpro, Jan 28 2003

       I liked this idea better when it was called the Colorado River/Three Gorges/Tennesse River Authority/NAWAPA/Coumbia River/Kemano Completion Project/etc.   

       (NAWAPA applying most to this idea. It was a plan formulated in the 50s, which stated that the Rocky Mountain Trench in Canada should be dammed. This would create a massive resevoir stretching nearly 2/3 of the length of British Columbia, covering Prince George and dozens lesser towns under water. The water would then be pumped south to the States to feed all the thirsty soccer moms in deserts of the Southwest. The proponents justified the massive impact to Canada by saying that some of the water would be used to create a canal flowing to the east. Freight could then be shipped cheaply through the country. Of course, only cheaply for 8 months of the year since it'd be frozen over during the winter. It's certainly an amazing plan, if not completely ridiculous. It's almost Victorian in its naieve view of progress at the expense of everything else.)
rapid transit, May 16 2003

       The Continental Divide is in the way. There are plenty of natural canals. They are called rivers. But they flow toward the areas which typically get flooded. It cost too much to go against gravity on this scale.   

       Reminds me of a real proposal by Government decades ago to create a Nationally centralized sewage processing plant.
InsanityKlaus, Sep 19 2003

       I personally root for every fire, flood, hurricane and tornado. I know this is selfish, but ahh, what the hell.   

       Anyone else suffer from this, perhaps we can get a nihilist support group going.
wave_man, Dec 06 2003


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