California is No. 1!!

Taken at's short-lived celebration

Taken at's short-lived celebration

On American Rivers’ annual list of America’s 10 Most Endangered Rivers, that is. Dang! The editorial staffers here at–headquartered in Northern California–were all momentarily florid in the face from that ferocious rush of adrenaline-laden pride that engorges all Americans who learn that their country, state, municipality, area code, school, team, car, child, patchwork quilt, or pet rabbit has been ranked No. 1. Then we read the fine print.  From AlterNet’s coverage of the announcement:

The nation’s most endangered river is actually an entire river system threatened by outdated water and flood management policies. California’s Sacramento-San Joaquin River system, the largest watershed in the state is on the verge of collapse, American Rivers warns. The risks are numerous – climate change, population growth, water supply demands, and endangered species listings.

OK, we get it. California got owned by American Rivers, and this No. 1 business is an ironic tribute to the Big Bad-assed Bear’s relentless race to the bottom ranking in every category. (We were recently named No. 1 on the list of the least amount of money spent per student in our K-12 system! Below Mississippi. Really.)

But yo, other states! You runner-ups, no-shows, and wanabees have to admit that we do everything big in the Golden State, including fail! This isn’t that little trickle you call Flint River, second-place Georgia! This is an entire friggin’ system that we’re neglecting at our own peril! We’re talking major watershed, suckahs! Deal with it!


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