A set of methods to get ECCC IDF data from .txt files
Author houton199
1 Star
Updated Last
3 Years Ago
Started In
June 2019

IDFDataCanada.jl 🇨🇦

Project Status: WIP – Initial development is in progress, but there has not yet been a stable, usable release suitable for the public.

A set of methods to get ECCC IDF data from .txt files.

Work in progress: run at your own risk

Note: Compatible with Linux/MacOS only, sorry Windows users... 😐


Intensity-Duration-Frequency (IDF) data from Engineering Climate Datasets of Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) are available for download in .txt format, a format that can be less convinient to use. IDFDataCanada.jl offers methods to get ECCC IDF data in NetCDF (.nc) or CSV (.csv) format automatically from the .txt files from ECCC's Google Drive.

Required dependencies

Julia dependencies

  • CSV
  • DataFrames
  • Dates
  • Glob
  • HTTP
  • LibCURL
  • NCDatasets

Command-line utilities

  • unzip

Getting started


IDFDataCanada is now a registered package. It can be installed using Julia's builtin package manager:

Pkg> add IDFDataCanada

Extract data

The key feature of IDFDataCanada is the data_download function. It can be used directly by providing the province code (ex: "QC" for Quebec), the output directory (must be an existing folder) and the format (CSV or netCDF). CSV format is selected by default. The two keyword arguments, split and rm_temp, can be set to extract data in a subfolder for each province or to keep the temporarily downloaded zip files.

using IDFDataCanada
data_download(province::String, output_dir::String, format::String="csv"; split::Bool=false, rm_temp::Bool=true)

data_download will create output files of the specified format in the output directory.



By choosing NetCDF format, it will return a NetCDF file for each station of the selected province with station informations and ECCC Short Duration Rainfall Intensity-Duration-Frequency Data from Table 1: Annual Maximum (mm).

	station = UNLIMITED ; // (1 currently)
	obs = UNLIMITED ; // (29 currently)
	name_strlen = UNLIMITED ; // (20 currently)
	id_strlen = UNLIMITED ; // (7 currently)
	float lon(station) ;
		lon:standard_name = "longitude" ;
		lon:long_name = "station longitude" ;
		lon:units = "degrees_east" ;
	float lat(station) ;
		lat:standard_name = "latitude" ;
		lat:long_name = "station latitude" ;
		lat:units = "degrees_north" ;
	float alt(station) ;
		alt:long_name = "vertical distance above the surface" ;
		alt:standard_name = "height" ;
		alt:units = "m" ;
		alt:positive = "up" ;
		alt:axis = "Z" ;
	char station_name(name_strlen, station) ;
		station_name:long_name = "station name" ;
	char station_ID(id_strlen, station) ;
		station_ID:long_name = "station id" ;
		station_ID:cf_role = "timeseries_id" ;
	int row_size(station) ;
		row_size:long_name = "number of observations for this station" ;
		row_size:sample_dimension = "obs" ;
	double time(obs) ;
		time:standard_name = "time" ;
		time:units = "days since 1900-01-01" ;
	float max_rainfall_amount_5min(obs) ;
		max_rainfall_amount_5min:long_name = "Annual maximum rainfall amount 5-minutes" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_5min:coordinates = "time lat lon alt station_ID" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_5min:cell_methods = "time: sum over 5 min time: maximum within years" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_5min:units = "mm" ;
	float max_rainfall_amount_10min(obs) ;
		max_rainfall_amount_10min:long_name = "Annual maximum rainfall amount 10-minutes" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_10min:coordinates = "time lat lon alt station_ID" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_10min:cell_methods = "time: sum over 10 min time: maximum within years" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_10min:units = "mm" ;
	float max_rainfall_amount_15min(obs) ;
		max_rainfall_amount_15min:long_name = "Annual maximum rainfall amount 15-minutes" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_15min:coordinates = "time lat lon alt station_ID" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_15min:cell_methods = "time: sum over 15 min time: maximum within years" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_15min:units = "mm" ;
	float max_rainfall_amount_30min(obs) ;
		max_rainfall_amount_30min:long_name = "Annual maximum rainfall amount 30-minutes" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_30min:coordinates = "time lat lon alt station_ID" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_30min:cell_methods = "time: sum over 30 min time: maximum within years" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_30min:units = "mm" ;
	float max_rainfall_amount_1h(obs) ;
		max_rainfall_amount_1h:long_name = "Annual maximum rainfall amount 1-hour" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_1h:coordinates = "time lat lon alt station_ID" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_1h:cell_methods = "time: sum over 1 hour time: maximum within years" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_1h:units = "mm" ;
	float max_rainfall_amount_2h(obs) ;
		max_rainfall_amount_2h:long_name = "Annual maximum rainfall amount 2-hours" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_2h:coordinates = "time lat lon alt station_ID" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_2h:cell_methods = "time: sum over 2 hour time: maximum within years" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_2h:units = "mm" ;
	float max_rainfall_amount_6h(obs) ;
		max_rainfall_amount_6h:long_name = "Annual maximum rainfall amount 6-hours" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_6h:coordinates = "time lat lon alt station_ID" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_6h:cell_methods = "time: sum over 6 hours time: maximum within years" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_6h:units = "mm" ;
	float max_rainfall_amount_12h(obs) ;
		max_rainfall_amount_12h:long_name = "Annual maximum rainfall amount 12-hours" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_12h:coordinates = "time lat lon alt station_ID" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_12h:cell_methods = "time: sum over 12 hours time: maximum within years" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_12h:units = "mm" ;
	float max_rainfall_amount_24h(obs) ;
		max_rainfall_amount_24h:long_name = "Annual maximum rainfall amount 24-hours" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_24h:coordinates = "time lat lon alt station_ID" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_24h:cell_methods = "time: sum over 24 hours time: maximum within years" ;
		max_rainfall_amount_24h:units = "mm" ;

// global attributes:
		:featureType = "timeSeries" ;
		:title = "Short Duration Rainfall Intensity-Duration-Frequency Data (ECCC)" ;
		:Conventions = "CF-1.7" ;
		:comment = "see H.2.4. Contiguous ragged array representation of time series" ;
		:original_source = "idf_v3-00_2019_02_27_702_PROV_STATIONID_STATIONNAME.txt" 


By choosing CSV format, it will return a CSV file for each station of the selected province with ECCC Short Duration Rainfall Intensity-Duration-Frequency Data from Table 1: Annual Maximum (mm).

Année 5min 10min 15min 30min 1h 2h 6h 12h 24h

Station informations for all the province are returned in a CSV file named info_stations_{PROVINCE_CODE}.csv :

Name Province ID Lat Lon Elevation Number of years CSV filename Original filename



Let's say someone wants to extract IDF data for Prince Edward Island (PE) in NetCDF format in the present working directory:

julia> using IDF
julia> data_download("PE", pwd(), "netcdf")
   creating: IDF_v3.10_2020_03_27_PE/
  inflating: IDF_v3.10_2020_03_27_PE/idf_v-3.10_2020_03_27_830_PE_8300301_CHARLOTTETOWN_A.pdf  
  inflating: IDF_v3.10_2020_03_27_PE/idf_v-3.10_2020_03_27_830_PE_8300301_CHARLOTTETOWN_A.png  
  inflating: IDF_v3.10_2020_03_27_PE/idf_v-3.10_2020_03_27_830_PE_8300301_CHARLOTTETOWN_A.txt  
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  inflating: IDF_v3.10_2020_03_27_PE/idf_v-3.10_2020_03_27_830_PE_8300562_ST._PETERS.txt  
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  inflating: IDF_v3.10_2020_03_27_PE/idf_v-3.10_2020_03_27_830_PE_8300596_SUMMERSIDE.txt  
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  inflating: IDF_v3.10_2020_03_27_PE/idf_v-3.10_2020_03_27_830_PE_830P001_HARRINGTON_CDA_CS.pdf  
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Five netCDF files (,,, and corresponding to the Prince Edward Island stations will be returned in the present working directory.


Then, let's say someone wants to extract IDF data for Prince Edward Island (PE) in CSV format in the present working directory after having already downloaded the zip file:

julia> data_download("PE", pwd(), "csv")
replace IDF_v3.00_2019_02_27_PE/idf_v3-00_2019_02_27_830_PE_8300301_CHARLOTTETOWN_A.pdf? [y]es, [n]o, [A]ll, [N]one, [r]ename: N
8300301.csv : OK
8300596.csv : OK
830P001.csv : OK

Three CSV files (8300301.csv, 8300596.csv and 830P001.csv) corresponding to the Prince Edward Island stations data and another CSV file (info_stations_PE.csv) containing the stations information will be returned in the present working directory.


  • Add tests
  • Add ECCC weather station data (work in progress)

Used By Packages

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