California Superstorm
The "California Superstorm" is a worst-case scenario for planning purposes.

ARkStorm Summit
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Image Credit: USGS

The two-day ARkStorm Summit served as venue for the offical release of the ARkStorm Scenario. 250 invited guests from the public and private sector joined together to to take action as a result of the scenario’s findings. Emergency managers, regulatory and scientific agencies, policymakers, business leaders, and other experts from the public and private sector came to Sacramento on January 13 & 14, 2011 for two full day of sessions.1

Flooding in California

Historically, California has seen a great number of floods2. Flooding and California appear to go hand-in-hand. The reasons for this are geological.

The central valley of California is located between the Sierra Nevada and the coastal Ranges. This leaves the entire drainage of this large valley with only a few, restricted outlets to the Pacific Ocean. Large deluges frequently overwhelm these outlets causing flooding.

The Great Flood of 1862

In 1862 it rained heavily and continuously for a period of 45 days. The resulting flooding stretched from the Columbia River in Oregon, South to San Diego, and caused thousands of deaths of livestock, and millions of dollars in damage. This is known as the Great Flood of 1862", and caused the State of California to go bankrupt3.

The ARkStorm Summit

In January 2011, the ARkStorm4 Summit was convened as a brainstorming session to review a scenario where a repeat of the 1862 storm occurs, and to begin advance planning should such an event occur. This is similar to the advance planning that the California Emergency Management Agency (CalEMA) does to prepare local agencies for dangerous and destructive earthquakes5.

From the ArkStorm Summit website:

The USGS, FEMA, and CalEMA presented this two-day event to engage stakeholders from across California to take action as a result of the USGS ARkStorm Scenario’s findings, which were officially released at the Summit. Leaders from across the country helped to share the multidisciplinary scientific findings of the USGS ARkStorm Scenario, which has been developed over the last two years by over 100 scientists and experts. Attendees were led in a series of workshops to examine the outcomes of the scientific report and develop paths to action for each individual and agency to take back with them for further consideration after the summit concluded.

In other words, this is the kind of advance planning that these agencies should be doing in order to prepare for natural disasters.

A YouTube video explains the summit's purposes.

What does it have to do with 2012?

Nothing, really. The ARkStorm Summit sought to establish a worst-case but plausible scenario for disaster planning. It was not a "prediction" that a major superstorm would hit within a given time frame. Regardless, in what has now become a typical pattern for 2012 believers, it is has been linked to 2012 by various sites.


Well, it is the government (and especially that darling of conspiracy theorists, FEMA) saying that there will be a natural disaster. What could be more appealing to a 2012 believer?

Some articles we found on the internet proclaim things like: "A California Superstorm with Mayan 2012 Apocalypse properties", and "California Superstorm | Winter 2011 2012 scientists predict"6


Far from being a "Prediction" that a super-storm will occur in 2012, or that a super-storm is linked with 2012, the ARkStorm Summit was a brainstorming session that was held to inform local agencies, and assist them in their disaster planning.


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