When We Reign, It Pours

How much responsibility do humans have for the floods disastrously deluging the Midwest? Of course the rain poured for days, but it fell on plowed-up prairies, drained fields, altered streams, no-longer-wetlands, and developed flood plains — all unable to absorb precipitation to the best of their natural ability. Between 2007 and 2008, more than 160,000 acres of Iowa land mostly covered with deep-rooted, water-absorbing grasses was taken out of a federal conservation-reserve program to be farmed mostly for corn.

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