There’s a riveting online article raising the scary possibility of more frequent megastorms like the siege that struck California in 1861-62.
The Scientific American article says the rain started on Christmas Eve 1861 and continued 43 days, turning the Central Valley into an inland sea 300 miles long and 20 miles wide.
It apparently was not just a freak, the article says. New studies suggest this kind of storm hits every two centuries.
So will climate change increase the frequency? Just raising the question causes anxiety, and you can understand why. The article’s description of the 1860s event is like a script for a disaster flick.
Scientific American said: “Downtown Sacramento was submerged under 10 feet of brown water filled with debris from countless mudslides on the region’s steep slopes. California’s legislature, unable to function, moved to San Francisco until Sacramento dried out — six months later. By then, the state was bankrupt.”
It’s worth a read.