Currently in Chicago — August 17th, 2022

Week Ends With Seasonable Warmth

The weather, currently.

Takeaways for Chicago's weather:

1. Week Ends With Seasonable Warmth

2. Wet At Times This Weekend

3. Cooling Off By Sunday

Highs should hit the lower to middle 80s Thursday through Saturday. After that seasonable warmth we’ll see highs slide back into the middle to upper 70s for Sunday. Plenty of sunshine to end the work week, but more clouds than sun this weekend with occasional scattered showers and thunderstorms. It won’t be a washout with some dry hours but the best chance of rain will come early and late both Saturday and Sunday. Next week should start off dry, with highs near 80 but cooler 70s lakeside.

Tim McGill

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What you need to know, currently.

Every winter, atmospheric rivers flow off the Pacific ocean towards California, many of them carrying more suspended water through the air than the largest terrestrial rivers on earth. In 1862 a series of atmospheric rivers proved disastrous for the Western United States, bringing catastrophic and unprecedented flooding to Oregon, California, and Nevada.

In 2010, scientists began a study they called the ArkStorm Scenario, named for the biblical flood, to account for the effect of climate change on these worst case scenarios floods.

According to the geologic record, these floods — caused by a quick succession of atmospheric rivers — occur every 150 to 200 years in California. A new study in Science Advances suggests that climate change has doubled the chances of this kind of catastrophic flooding occurring within the next four decades.

“The last time government agencies studied a hypothetical California megaflood, more than a decade ago, they estimated it could cause $725 billion in property damage and economic disruption,”  writes Raymond Zhong in the New York Times. “That was three times the projected fallout from a severe San Andreas Fault earthquake, and five times the economic damage from Hurricane Katrina, which left much of New Orleans underwater for weeks in 2005.”