atmospheric river headed California way

I love the way “atmospheric river” has now entered the public weather discussion lexicon:

Enjoy the dry, cool days that mark the start of this week in the Sacramento area. Then get ready for an “atmospheric river” late in the week that will bring perhaps 3 inches of rain to the Valley, the National Weather Service said Sunday.

ARs (they evening have an initialism!) are all the rage in weather and water management circles in the west these days. Some material from the Inkstain back catalog:


  1. Pineapple Express is so much better at many levels.

    Atmospheric river is mo’ correct but not mo’ bettah. Now if we can get it to come this way…



  2. I always found it a bit ironic that (some) people are highly critical of Arizona’s bifurcated system with respect to water rights (groundwater/surface water) but rarely does anyone mention the third prong.

    One might argue that the failure to consider atmospheric water makes sense because there is no practical way to harvest that water, but that does not appear to be a valid reason to ignore the connection because the same was true of groundwater before high-speed turbine pumps and rural electrification. (I am not saying that atmospheric water should be considered in water rights laws, only that if one is going to argue the bifurcated system is wrong, then she or he should also address the atmosphere.)

  3. Pingback: Another Week of GW News, December 2, 2012 – A Few Things Ill Considered

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