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California is threatened by flooding from another “atmospheric river” that formed to funnel a massive stream of water vapor over the central portion of the state. This week’s atmospheric river system was one of the stronger ones that the National Weather Service says can carry as much as 15 times the average flow of water at the mouth of the Mississippi River. Excessive rainfall is a problem for crops in the region while wind gusts of up to 100 miles per hour are responsible for power outages. The storm was the latest in a string of severe weather events that have occurred this winter to provide relief against drought in the West, but that now pose the risk of flooding for many farmers heading into the spring planting season.   California weather should remain a matter of interest as Nutrien meteorologist Eric Snodgrass says that “we need to be watching the West Coast sea surface temperatures closely.” The risk of drought in the Midwest is elevated if these Pacific coastal waters continue to turn colder, although Snodgrass cautions that the effect could be minimal or even entirely offset if an El Nino takes over as the dominant influence of weather…

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