Written by Robert Shibatani for Maven’s Notebook – We’re now in what some call the summer’s anvil, the heart of the hot season.  And while temperatures have moderated somewhat, widespread arid conditions, declining water levels, and large as yet contained wildfires like the Dixie, McFarland, and several new fires in Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks have made for a challenging time in State water resources management.  Throughout the U.S. western and southwestern States, seasonal flash floods have prompted declarations of local states of emergency with several missing people and a few regrettable fatalities. Fortunately for California, we have so far been spared the consequences of widespread flash flooding but seeing it in surrounding States is a sober reminder that even during the worst droughts, monsoonal conditions can bring devastating floods quickly and without regard to human safety. (more)