The Mississippi River And The Pineapple Express

Tom Fisk Pexels

One is drying up. The other produces raging floods. The Mississippi is in the midst of a drought. The NASA Earth Observatory reported that the Mississippi River was historically low late last year. The Pineapple Express, a massive river in the sky that gains strength from the warm Pacific close to Hawaii, has caused record rain levels in West Coast cities.  Based on estimates by meteorologists, the Pineapple Express, which has just arrived on the West Coast in two waves, contained  27 times as much water as is in the Mississippi at any given moment. As the Mississippi shrinks, the frequency and size of the Pineapple Express are likely to increase. 

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A NASA analysis reported that the Mississippi reached a record low in 2022. In 2023, the water level decreased almost as much.  In its annual report on the river’s level, its experts wrote: “This is the second year in a row drought has caused the river to fall to near-record lows at many gauges. On September 26, 2023, the river level at a gauge in Memphis was -10.26 feet, close to the record low level, -10.81 feet, measured at the same place on October 21, 2022. “ The Mississippi’s drought problem below New Orleans is so significant that there is an encroachment of seawater into some towns in the area.

This year’s Pineapple Express will lash the West Coast with near-record rains and high wind storms. The activity is a carbon copy of last year’s storms that hit the area from late 2022 to March 2023. The Pineapple Express is a recurring metrological event first identified in 1862. It has brought drenching rain to the West Coast six times since 2010. The current storms could become the most violent since the event was first identified.

The US and many large countries geographically can now have hundred-year droughts in one region, 110-degree heat in another area, violent storms, floods, and damaging wind, all in the same year.  Almost all information on climate change shows this trend will become more frequent and much worse.

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