Is another Dust Bowl in the works?

decrease font size  Resize text   increase font size       Printer-friendly version of this article Printer-friendly version of this article

click image to zoomDrought MonitorThe Drought Monitor map released on May 8, 2014. Thursday’s Drought Monitor had little good news for many states in the western half of the United States. Despite some improvement seen in the northern Corn Belt, much of the nation’s heartland reported worsening drought conditions.

Searing heat exacerbated the already dry conditions in Kansas and the southern Plains. In Kansas, one ag specialist told “NBC Nightly News” this year’s wheat crop is the worst he has seen in his 52 years.

Currently 53 percent of Kansas, 49 percent of Oklahoma, and 46 percent of Texas are in extreme or worse drought. USDA Meteorologist Brad Rippey explained that devastatingly dry, dusty and windy conditions in April have fueled concerns in these areas of a “New Dust Bowl.”

He wrote in a Drought Monitor news update, “The ‘Terrible Teens’ drought, which for many parts of the southern Great Plains began in the fall of 2010 and has lasted for more than 3½ years, continues to take a severe toll on rangeland, pastures, and winter wheat. “

In Texas, drought has forced Wichita Falls officials to turn to toilets for tap water on fears the city will run out of water within two years.

Further to the west, farmers and residents in California are also facing severe water woes of their own. Currently more than 76 percent of California is in extreme or exceptional drought.

With reservoirs running dangerous low, a new plan considered by state officials takes an “audacious” approach to bringing water to help thirsty farm. The plan uses pumps to reverse the flow of the California Aqueduct to send water uphill. Read more here.

Click here to read the full Drought Monitor map.

Looking ahead, the Climate Prediction Center’s Monthly Drought Outlook shows the drought persisting or intensifying drought stretching from Kansas to the California coast. With El Nino likely to develop sometime during the second-half of the year, long-term drought relief is still months away.

“Where the drought is so bad, temperatures are going to be hot because the atmosphere to going to continue to bake. We expect the drought to build even more so into the Plains as we go through the summer months,” Cantore explained to “NBC Nightly News” in a report here.

Buyers Guide

Doyle Equipment Manufacturing Co.
Doyle Equipment Manufacturing prides themselves as being “The King of the Rotary’s” with their Direct Drive Rotary Blend Systems. With numerous setup possibilities and sizes, ranging from a  more...
A.J. Sackett Sons & Company
Sackett Blend Towers feature the H.I.M, High Intensity Mixer, the next generation of blending and coating technology which supports Precision Fertilizer Blending®. Its unique design allows  more...
R&R Manufacturing Inc.
The R&R Minuteman Blend System is the original proven performer. Fast, precise blending with a compact foot print. Significantly lower horsepower requirement. Low inload height with large  more...
Junge Control Inc.
Junge Control Inc. creates state-of-the-art product blending and measuring solutions that allow you to totally maximize operating efficiency with amazing accuracy and repeatability, superior  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The flagship blending system for the Layco product line is the fully automated Layco DW System™. The advanced technology of the Layco DW (Declining Weight) system results in a blending  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The LAYCOTE™ Automated Coating System provides a new level of coating accuracy for a stand-alone coating system or for coating (impregnating) in an automated blending system. The unique  more...
John Deere
The DN345 Drawn Dry Spreader can carry more than 12 tons of fertilizer and 17.5 tons of lime. Designed to operate at field speeds up to 20 MPH with full loads and the G4 spreader uniformly  more...
Force Unlimited
The Pro-Force is a multi-purpose spreader with a wider apron and steeper sides. Our Pro-Force has the most aggressive 30” spinner on the market, and is capable of spreading higher rates of  more...
BBI Spreaders
MagnaSpread 2 & MagnaSpread 3 — With BBI’s patented multi-bin technology, these spreaders operate multiple hoppers guided by independent, variable-rate technology. These models are built on  more...

Comments (0) Leave a comment 

e-Mail (required)


characters left


Made of high quality 304 stainless steel, the Quickveyor is one of the strongest trailers on the market. It’s belt ... Read More

View all Products in this segment

View All Buyers Guides

Feedback Form
Feedback Form