California is suffering from one of its driest winters on record, but some statewide water managers are focusing on the opposite end of the precipitation spectrum — the one-in-five residents who live in regions prone to catastrophic flooding.
A joint state-federal report designed to sound a flood-preparedness warning says that more than $575 billion in development and $7 billion in farm output sits on or around floodplains. The report was released on the state Department of Water Resources website this week.
It warns that the price-tag for capital improvements to protect the state’s infrastructure from potential devastation could top $100 billion. That’s 10 times more than exists in funding from bond measures to shore up aging levies and dams.
The report attempts to identify areas at risk, so water managers can prioritize projects.