Since , Nordic large corporates have increased their dependence on financing through debt capital markets while at the same time cutting their share of funding from bank loans. Among the rated companies the share of financing through the debt capital market had increased to 53 percent in from 38 percent in The unrated corporates saw the share rise to 19 percent from 7 percent.
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The development is mainly due to two key drivers, they argue. The first is a pull factor. Low interest rates have investors chasing returns, which has put focus on the potentially higher yield of corporate bonds versus government bonds. The second driver is a push factor.
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The post-crisis regulation placed on the financial sector now requires banks to hold bigger capital reserves for their lending. It has thus changed the profit potential of corporate lending and given banks incentives to encourage corporates to look for funding elsewhere. As night fell on May 22, the region was battered by yet another storm surge.
Two barges from the area lost their mooring and struck the dam, sinking below the waves and potentially damaging an already straining bit of infrastructure. By noon the next day, the Arkansas was taking on , cfs from Keystone Lake. The following days saw more storms and tornadoes.
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The state of emergency expanded to cover all of Oklahoma. The federal government approved the disaster declaration and ordered more assistance to response efforts. The Arkansas rose from 21 to 23 feet, stopping just short of the 25 feet it reached in October Precipitation continued in the Tulsa area and upriver, compounding the floods.
The Corps lowered the dam again, ultimately releasing , cfs by May On May 29, the Corps gradually raised the dam again, and by May 31 the dam was releasing , cfs, more than the , it is estimated to be taking in. Unfortunately, more storms are on the horizon, both in the immediate future and stretching into the next years and decades. Our climate continues to change, and with greater change comes more instability.
The Fourth National Climate Assessment, released last year, attempts to outline the risks and impacts of climate change across the United States over the coming century. Although more research is needed, the climate report shows some evidence that severe storms, tornados, hailstorms and other extreme weather events will increase in our area in the coming century.
Storms are difficult to predict, but the Arkansas River gets its water from a huge area covering parts of northern Oklahoma and southern Colorado and Kansas. Increased storm activity anywhere in this watershed could increase our risk for floods. It is known that extreme weather events like this cause stress to existing infrastructure.
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Dams, bridges, levees, roads and other crucial infrastructure built to withstand historical extremes will be exposed to greater strain than ever intended. The authors of the report found that many dams and levees in our region, the Southern Great Plains, have gone uninspected and unmaintained.
These responsibilities fall largely on local governments, many of which lack the funding and resources to fulfill them. Small towns and rural municipalities are especially vulnerable. Todd Kilpatrick, who spent the last six years as a levee commissioner, says the levee is past its expiration date.
The climate assessment predicts that our region will increasingly experience swings from drought to flooding, much as we are experiencing now. This means that the soil will spend more time drying out, while moisture will come in ever briefer and more intense bursts that do not soak in as much as they run off. The net effect will be an ever drier, less fertile landscape and more potential for damaging floods. The report found that droughts have increasingly ended with flooding in recent years. The study concludes that flood standards and floodplain management will have to change to accommodate these changes.
Unfortunately this will be left to local governments, many of which are limited in funds and other resources. Floods, as part of a pattern of extreme weather, can change the makeup of our ecosystem in unpredictable ways.
These patterns open the door for invasive species like weeds, vermin, algae and fungi that can damage or contaminate crops. The levees that run parallel to Charles Page Boulevard protect two oil refineries and scores of homes in Tulsa and Sand Springs. Water is currently seeping under them, flooding parts of this area. This can erode the sand and soil that makes the levees, further weakening them.