The whole state of Iowa is currently experiencing some level of drought. This was according to an update released Thursday. Some parts of Northeast Iowa have joined the dry side as reflected by the report from the US Drought Monitor. Other areas of the state slipped deeper into the rankings.
The US Drought Monitor utilizes a scale ranging from D0, abnormally dry, to D4, exceptional drought. The latest report showed that a fifth of Iowa’s landmass is in D2 or severe drought. Around 60 percent is in at least D1 or moderate drought.
According to the report, the central part of the nation experienced above-normal temperatures with worsening drought that led to widespread deterioration of conditions across the Midwest. Last week, Black Hawk, Bremer, Butler, Buchanan and Fayette are the remaining counties in Iowa that were drought-free. At present, they are now abnormally dry according to the report.
The US Drought Monitor noted the fast onset of dry conditions in the Midwest. It stated that above-normal temperatures as well as fast deteriorating soil moisture conditions have led to a late-season flash drought.
Iowa started 2013 in dire conditions, with projections showing grim consequences. From January to May, the state got 11.46 inches more rain than the normal in Waterloo. Most of the rainfall came in April and May that recorded 9.69 inches of rain.
Most communities in Northeast Iowa experienced flooding rivers, damaged roads and wet basements instead of drought. Toward the end of April, the eastern half of Iowa was drought-free. June ended with the entire state free of dry conditions.
However, the weather changed by the middle of July. The month produced more than 4 inches of rain in Waterloo but most dropped on July 25 with 3.09 inches. By Wednesday, Waterloo got 1.91 inches but most of the rain came during a single storm last August 5.