Richter AG

an association of agricultural companies

We are a family owned and operated, vertically integrated rice growing operation based in Northern California.

707 Main St - Colusa, CA 95932

El Nino Dreams

One can’t predict the weather more than a few days in advance.
— Stephen Hawking

Many farmers would argue the weather can't be accurately predicted one day in advance, but that doesn't stop meteorologists from slinging weather news faster than a paperboy.  The latest bold prediction is that a large El Nino is brewing in the Pacific, which might not only bring heavy rains, but drought busting floods too.   Is it okay to be excited about possible flooding?  Because the prospect of flooding sounds pretty exciting right now.

The news of this pending El Nino does feel like deja vu all over again.  This time last year we heard similar tales of a wet winter pattern, which seemed to be coming to fruition during a soaker of a November.  Then sometime in December, the faucets were shut off and it was a long, dry winter the rest of the way.

Now here we are again... Meteorologists claiming another, bigger, real-deal El Nino is primed to blast us into another dimension.   "This year is different... This is a much stronger El Nino... It will be 1997 all over again... But worse!"   All of that sounds really exciting, but it's hard to get too excited when these predictions so often turn out to be wrong.

I will admit, the across the board confidence the forecasters have this time around has made me optimistic.  And seeing maps like this...

...showing the massive disparity between warm water and cold water leads me to believe this may be a drought busting winter after all.  So maybe it's okay to get excited this time.  Maybe this will be the one.  They say all great droughts end in great floods.  Perhaps the waters will rise along with our hopes of an end to this 100 years drought nonsense we've been fed by the sensational media.

I've decided to allow myself to be hopeful, given the overwhelming evidence that a wet winter is on deck.  It's hard to not let a smile creep over your face at the prospect of full reservoirs, replenished aquifers, and 100% water allocation announcements rolling in from the local irrigation districts.