Saturday, August 02, 2008

CNN: "Road to Ruin": anticipates California central valley flood mega-disaster

Last night (Aug. 1, at 8 PM EDT), CNN ran a report “Roads to Ruin: Why America Is Falling Apart”. A portion of the program had the effect of a History Channel “Mega-Disasters” segment, exploring what could happen in the central valley of California (the San Joaquin Valley) in an earthquake and heavy Pacific rains (usually in the winter) combined. The levees around the irrigated agricultural fields in the flat portions along I-5 would liquefy, inundate everything, and render 300,000 people homeless -- an prove catastrophic for the nation's food prices. The housing crisis would be comparable to that of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Some of Sacramento would be inundated.

I last visited that area myself in February 2002, and, believe it or not, it was actually cold.

The show then covered the bridge collapse on I-35 across the Mississippi River in Minneapolis on Aug. 1, 2007. The replacement bridge is almost rebuilt and is due to reopen by Dec 24, 2008.

The show discussed the massive expense required to shore up America’s levees – not just around New Orleans, but in California and along major Midwestern rivers and flood plains. California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger appeared.

Last night, ABC’s “Person of the Week” presented, as “person of the week”, a 16 year old teen who spent the summer cleaning out houses gutted by the catastrophic floods in Cedar Rapids, IA.

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