Yes, frequent flooding events are actually a reality in Moncton. It is important to note that this doesn’t mean that floods are frequent, but it does mean that when one does happen, they can be severe and life-threatening. There was also a flood in the year 2007 which cost Canada $440 million as well as many buildings damaged or destroyed. So yes, Moncton has had its fair share of floods.
Moncton isn’t alone in the potential for flooding — other cities that experience frequent flooding include Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa. The cause of these frequent occurrences isn’t entirely known but there is some speculation about where some of the water may be coming from – mostly when it snows up north. This water then flows down to rivers and through them, into the St. Lawrence River.
With a changing climate, flooding is predicted by many to become increasing common in Canada and other parts of the world over the next couple of decades. It is speculated that with higher temperatures come higher evaporation rates which in turn can lead to increased precipitation, particularly when it comes to snowfall. One example of this is for every 1 degree Celsius increase in temperature above normal, evaporation goes up 2%.
However, experts say that it will still take a while before we really know whether or not these rain patterns are actually becoming more frequent and more intense. The increased precipitation will typically be accompanied by an increase in the number of heavy storms across the province.
The frequency of flooding is predicted to ramp up over the next few decades due to a variety of factors that include: urbanization in already water-vulnerable areas; the continued melting of glaciers and ice caps; and climate change which is causing sea levels to rise. Thus Moncton residents would have likely begun to see flooding events at some point over the past 2-3 decades but this isn’t something that has been officially measured.