The U.S. is still suffering from the worst drought to hit the country in over 50 years. And some parts of the country are being hit harder than others.
The latest drought map from the U.S. Drought Monitor shows “categorical improvements” in MidAtlantic states of Maryland, Delaware, and Virginia. Drought conditions also eased in Florida because of rains brought by Hurricane Issac. But conditions worsened in South Dakota, Texas, Oklahoma, and Colorado.
While the drought impacted corn, soybean and other crop prices a while ago, the USDA has now warned that it will push the price of meat higher too. From the USDA:
“The U.S. Drought Monitor indicates that 63 per cent of the nation’s hay acreage is in an area experiencing drought, while approximately 72 per cent of the nation’s cattle acreage is in an area experiencing drought.
Approximately 86 per cent of the U.S. corn is within an area experiencing drought, down from a peak of 89 per cent on July 24, and 83 per cent of the U.S. soybeans are in a drought area, down from a high of 88 per cent on July 24.
During the week ending August 26, USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service reported that 52 per cent of U.S. corn and 38 per cent of the soybeans were rated in very poor to poor condition, while rangeland and pastures rated very poor to poor remained at 59 per cent for the fourth consecutive week.”
Looking to the week ahead however the U.S. drought monitor expects some rain from Hurricane Isaac:
“Over the next five days (August 29-September 2) the remnants of Hurricane Isaac will continue to move inland and impact the area from Louisiana into Arkansas and portions of Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana. Areas of the Midwest may see up to 7 inches of rain as the system moves through the region. The southwestern United States looks to stay in an active pattern with scattered showers from Arizona up into Utah and Idaho. Temperatures look to be well above normal over much of the country, with departures of 6-9 degrees Fahrenheit over the High Plains.”
Here is the latest drought map from the U.S. Drought Monitor:
Photo: Drought Monitor
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