From Reuters – When devastating floods swept California last month, the community of Grayson – a town of 1,300 people tucked between almond orchards and dairy farms where the San Joaquin and Tuolumne rivers converge – survived without major damage. In the minds of some townspeople and experts, that was thanks partly to the 2,100 acres (850 hectares) of former farmland just across the San Joaquin that have been largely restored to a natural floodplain. Advocates for floodplain restoration say it can help solve California’s dual dangers of flooding and drought, replenishing groundwater for future drought relief while protecting towns from the catastrophic flooding that scientists predict will come with climate change. Restoration also improves wildlife habitat. (more)