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Deadly Drought Worsens Corn, Soybean, Pasture and Range Conditions

Posted by feww on July 24, 2012

Corn in v. poor or poor condition increases to 45 percent: USDA

The amount of corn considered to be in very poor to poor condition has increased by 7 percent since last week due to ongoing drought and lingering heat wave, according to the USDA Crop Progress report.

  • The amount of corn regarded as being in good or excellent condition was 26 percent for the week ending July 22, a drop of 5 percent since previous week. It was 62 percent last year.
  • The USDA statistics are based on 18 States which planted 92% of the 2011 corn acreage: Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin.


U.S. Corn Condition by State Map as of July 22, 2012. Source: USDA/AWA

Soybean Condition

The amount of soybeans considered to be in very poor to poor condition was 35 percent, an increase of 5 percent since last week.

  • The amount of soybean regarded as being in good or excellent condition was 31 percent, a drop of 3 percent since last week. It was 62 percent last year.
  • The statistics are based on 18 States that planted 95% of the 2011 soybean acreage: Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina,
    North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Tennessee and Wisconsin.

Pasture and Range Condition

Pasture and Range Condition for the lower 48 States which are weighted based on pasture acreage and/or livestock inventories, further deteriorated by 1 percent.

  • V. poor to poor category rose to 55 percent. It was 33 percent last year.

[Source: Crop Progress (July 2012) USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Report released July 23, 2012.]

Drought and Deluge Double Whammy

The historic drought could finally end in an epic deluge, in which case what is already extreme stress on the topsoil would be incalculable.


Corn in Drought Map. Latest available map of drought superimposed on the corn production areas. This map depicts drought-affected areas of the U.S. corn producing farmland as of July 17, 2012. Approximately 88% of the corn grown in the U.S. is within an area-experiencing drought, based on historical U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) crop production data.

Other Global Disasters/ Significant Events

  • China. Typhoon VICENTE has grown into a monstrous category 4A stormwith sustained winds of more than 215kmph.  The storm has landed  in southern China.
    • The Hong Kong Observatory has raised its storm warning signal to the highest level 10, while local media reported at least 70 people  injured, as of posting.


Typhoon VICENTE – NHC Enhanced IR Sat Image. Source: CIMSS

  • China.  Extreme Rain Events have buffeted 17 provinces in China since July 20, leaving hundreds dead or missing.
    • Rainstorm related disasters have affected up to 10 million people in thousands of towns and villages across 264 counties in 17 provinces, forcing about a million residents to flee their homes.
    • Rainstorms also destroyed or damaged about 100,000 homes.
    • “In Sichuan province, water levels in several rivers have exceeded the warning levels and the Luzhou section in the upper reach of the Yangtze River has witnessed the biggest flooding since 1949, according to the provincial flood control headquarters,” said a report.
    • Dozens of cities and villages are submerged under about 2m of water.
    • The influx of floodwater into the Three Gorges Reservoir, upstream of the gigantic Three Gorges hydropower project in Yichang, Hubei province, is expected to reach 70,000 cubic meters per second, the report said.


Original Caption: The pivot of Three Gorges releases flood water in seven spillways in Yichang, central China’s Hubei Province, July 23, 2012. The Three Gorges Dam will experience its largest flood peak this year on Tuesday, the Yangtze River flood control and drought relief headquarters said Monday. (Xinhua/Zheng Jiayu)

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2 Responses to “Deadly Drought Worsens Corn, Soybean, Pasture and Range Conditions”

    • feww said

      When the only tool you have is conventional science, everything looks like La Niña and her young sibling!

      There are scores of situations, mostly anthropogenic, in which the impact of Sun on the planet would be exacerbated, but the main issue remains one of cause and effect.

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