Bloomberg News

U.S. Drought Monitor Report for the Week Ending Aug. 14 (Text)

August 16, 2012

Following is the text of the weekly U.S. Drought Monitor as released by the National Drought Mitigation Center in Lincoln, Nebraska:


This U.S. Drought Monitor week saw a few notable improvements
and some serious degradation.  One storm dumped much needed rain
through the Midwest improving the drought conditions there from
Iowa through Ohio.  Other areas, such as the Southern and
Central Plains, were not as lucky and continued to dry out.
Another changed that helped alleviate the drought in some
locations was the easing of the heat.  Many areas from the
Midwest to the South saw highs in the 80˚s F this week instead
of the 100˚s F they had been experiencing.  As of last week, 87%
of the U.S. corn crop, 85% of soybeans, 63% of hay, and 72% of
cattle areas were experiencing drought.  Over half of the corn
and soybean areas are experiencing Extreme (D3) to Exceptional
(D4) Drought.  This has led to both reduced yields and earlier
harvests.

The Southeast: Rains in the Southeast this helped to improve
drought conditions through Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina.
Exceptional Drought (D4) was eradicated in Alabama and reduced
in Georgia while Extreme (D3), Severe (D2), and Moderate (D1)
Drought were all reduced, as was Abnormal Dryness (D0).  In
South Carolina, improvements in areas of Extreme (D3), Severe
(D2), Moderate (D1) Drought and Abnormal Dryness (D0) were
experienced. Minor changes were made improving Abnormal Dryness
(D0) in parts of the south, and expanding Abnormal Dryness (D0)
in the north of North Carolina.

The Northeast and Mid-Atlantic: Most of this area received
enough precipitation that drought conditions held status quo
with minor reductions in Abnormal Dryness (D0) in Maine.

The South and Southern Plains:  In Oklahoma, large swaths of
Exceptional Drought (D4) were introduced as the impact of the
lack of rain and hot temperatures parched the state’s soil
moisture.  Texas also saw minor deterioration of conditions with
the expansion of Extreme Drought (D3) in the south, Severe
Drought (D2) in areas of the center and north, and in Moderate
Drought (D1) in the west.  In Louisiana, Severe Drought (D3)
expanded in the north.

The Central and Northern Plains and Midwest: Widespread rains in
the Midwest alleviated some D1-D4 Drought as well as Abnormal
Dryness (D0) in a swath from central Iowa, across northern and
central Illinois and Indiana, and into western Ohio and southern
Michigan.  North and South Dakota also experienced beneficial
precipitation, alleviating Abnormal Dryness (D0). Exceptional
Drought (D4) expanded in the western and central parts of
Nebraska and through central and eastern Kansas and into western
and central Missouri.

The West: Areas of Exceptional (D4) and Extreme (D3) Drought
generally expanded in Colorado where rain showers were largely
absent again this week.  In Idaho, Moderate Drought (D1) and
Abnormal Dryness (D0) expanded and wildfires were on the rise.
Other areas of the West remained status quo.

Hawaii, Alaska and Puerto Rico: Drought conditions remained
unchanged in Alaska and Puerto Rico and Hawaii this week.

Looking Ahead: During the August 16 - 20, 2012 time period,
there is an enhanced probability of precipitation from the
extreme South, through the Southeast and mid-Atlantic and
through New England. From the West through the Great Lakes,
there is a suppressed chance of precipitation.  Below normal
temperatures are expected from the center of the country
eastward.  The West is expected to see above normal
temperatures.

For the ensuing 5 days (August 21 - 25, 2012), the odds favor
normal to below normal temperatures from just east of the
Rockies to the east coast and also along the Pacific Coast.  In
a narrow band along the Rockies and in New England, the odds
favor warmer than normal temperatures. Above normal
precipitation is expected from New England, through the South
and into the extreme Southern Plains.  Normal to below normal
precipitation is expected over the rest of the lower 48 states.
In Alaska, temperatures are expected to be below normal in the
south and above normal along the Arctic Ocean while
precipitation is expected to be above normal in the south and
below normal along the Arctic Ocean.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stephen Rose in Washington at srose31@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Marco Babic at mbabic@bloomberg.net


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