Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

CNHI/SE Iowa

March 21, 2013

Drought remains, but hope emerges with spring

OTTUMWA — Iowa's drought shows relatively little change this week after last week's major improvement. But a look at the state six months ago and one year ago shows how much has changed.

Iowa's drought started in the northwest last year. In mid-March 2012, only the northwestern one-third of Iowa was considered to be in drought. A large portion of the affected area was already in severe drought, but most of the state was within normal ranges for moisture.

Fast forward six months and the picture is quite different. Most of Iowa was in an extreme drought and a portion of northwestern Iowa was in exceptional drought, the U.S. Drought Monitor's highest category. Crops that had looked good early in the year failed, with corn stalks burned into the ground by lack of rain and a dead brown replacing what should have been green.

This week's map shows conditions considerably improved from September 2012, but still far worse than a year ago. Severe drought has been washed from southeastern Iowa, replaced with "abnormally dry" ratings. But pockets of severe drought persist in northern and western Iowa. Only the tiniest of slivers in northeastern Iowa near the Mississippi River is completely out of the drought.

The National Weather Service forecasts an above average chance for a wet spring in most of Iowa. But that's far from a guarantee. In order for the state to recover, rainfall must be at or above normal for a sustained period.

That has happened for the last few months. Iowans are certainly hoping it stays that way.

1
Text Only
CNHI/SE Iowa
Features
AP Video
Arizona Execution Takes Almost Two Hours Gen. Odierno Discusses Ukraine, NATO at Forum Mint Gives JFK Coin a Face-lift Creative Makeovers for Ugly Cellphone Towers Ariz. Inmate Dies 2 Hours After Execution Began Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record Raw: Funeral for Man Who Died in NYPD Custody Israeli American Reservist Torn Over Return Former NTSB Official: FAA Ban 'prudent' Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme Biden Decries Voting Restrictions in NAACP Talk Broncos Owner Steps Down Due to Alzheimer's Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best Republicans Hold a Hearing on IRS Lost Emails Ex-NYC Mayor: US Should Allow Flights to Israel David Perdue Wins Georgia GOP Senate Runoff 98-Year-Old Woman Left in Parked Truck Home-sharing Programs Help Seniors Last Mass Lynching in U.S. Remains Unsolved Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion
Facebook
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Upon completion and reopening of Third Street, should the City of Knoxville wait to start the next stage of the Streetscape and Infrastructure project until 2015?

Yes
No
     View Results