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Too Much Water, Part 3

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John Benson's picture
Senior Consultant, Microgrid Labs

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: Microgrid Labs, Inc. Advisor: 2014 to Present Developed product plans, conceptual and preliminary designs for projects, performed industry surveys and developed...

  • Member since 2013
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  • Mar 30, 2023

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The part 2 post in this series was mostly about atmospheric rivers. However, where the prior “Too Much Water” post focused on the atmospheric rivers and similar storms that impacted California this winter, as well as their impact on the electric infrastructure, this one will mostly examine the potential causes of this unusual set of storms. In the prior post we also defined the primary cause (climate change), in this post we will dig a bit deeper.

The wet and snowy conditions for the West Coast continue, even though our current Pacific climate pattern (La Niña) is mostly known for dryer than normal years. However we are (officially) transitioning out of the La Niña pattern and into a neutral pattern. What’s next? Read this paper.

Rick Engebretson's picture
Rick Engebretson on Mar 30, 2023

Just throwing out a different concept for you to consider. Please peek at this web site describing the clean up efforts removing floating plastic from the Pacific Ocean near you


I offered this notion years ago when you were so dry. We in Minnesota had a similar experience with drought after the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico where our water comes from. After the spill was cleaned up we had good rains again.

Many years ago (1970s) studies were published about the critical top ocean surface effects from then more frequent oil tanker spills. The atmosphere/ocean interface has a lot of physical chemistry going on. Not too different from plastic wrapping food in your refrigerator.

Anyway, congratulations you got rain. Now plan on putting screens on your windows or the mosquitoes will eat you to craziness.

Humans can and do impact the environment. Whether they are thoughtful and honest enough to behave themselves for their own good is an open question.

John Benson's picture
John Benson on Mar 31, 2023

Thanks for the comment, Rick:

I worked for most my career for Siemens and spent part that time in Minneapolis. It wasn't the cold there I didn't like it was the really humid summers. I commuted to Minneapolis from California (long story) and the summers in MN were way too humid for me.

As far as the cold, I'm a cross-country skier, and ski at 7,000 ft in Bear Valley in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. I'm up here now (albeit at my cabin at 4,000 ft., about 30 miles from Bear Valley). I spent most of today shoveling snow (record snow this year).

There is no question plastic pollution is a major issue, I think we are doing too little, too late. Plastic is just too useful and inexpensive.

I recently started working on a post on plastic, after reading an excellent article in Scientific American (“Plastic's Messy End Game” on page S2 (supplement near the end of the issue), of the January 2023 issue). But I canned it. I write two educational articles a week, and I probably can one every week or two if it ends up taking too much work.


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Thank John for the Post!
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