California's Central Valley Levee Failure: Diagnosis, Geology, and Implications
for Floodfighting Response.
Stabilization of sea level about 6000 years ago resulted in the formation
of deltas and floodplains providing for the first time in 100,000 years
conditions suitable for agricultural surplus and highly organized human
society. Yet the early years of civilization were marked by unstable behavior
of lower river valleys influenced by erratic global climate as well as
transition of rivers into their present meandering form. Many human practices
and beliefs are rooted in the late fourth millenium (~3200 BC). And many
of our most pressing urban and environmental problems today, including
floods, arise from these same ancient events. The case is made here that
the key to diagnosis and treatmen of the levee failure problem is correct
understanding of levee foundation geology.
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flood geo vtech:2:an106k.gif:370
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coverage of the 1997 Arboga failure.