An unusually severe drought that damaged crops and livestock throughout the central US farming belt this past summer, and that is considered to be a likely sign of climate change, has persisted throughout the fall and is heading into winter, expanding its reach in farming states, says a new report, notes Carey Gillam at World Environment News. Drought continued to expand through many key farming states within the central United States into mid December, as scattered rainfall failed to replenish parched soils, according to a recent Drought Monitor report by state and federal climatology experts. Affected states include the top wheat producer, Kansas, as well as Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Texas. Over 60% of the contiguous US remains in moderate drought conditions, while the portion in severe drought, more than 42%, expanded slightly. Roughly 63 percent of the new winter wheat crop that U.S. farmers planted in the fall is in drought-hit areas, with the hard red winter wheat belt – especially from South Dakota to Texas – remaining deeply entrenched in drought, according to the Department of Agriculture. This is bad news for US winter wheat crops.
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Drought expands in many farm states Author: Carey Gillam
Drought continued to expand through many key farming states within the central United States in the past week, as scattered rainfall failed to replenish parched soils, according to a report issued Thursday by state and federal climatology experts. http://planetark.org/wen/67399