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Drought Crop Disaster Declared in Texas

Posted by feww on April 12, 2015

Drought destroys crops in 30 Texas counties

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has declared 30 additional counties across Texas as crop disaster areas due to damages and losses caused by the worsening drought.

The drought disaster designations are for the following areas:

  • Atascosa, Burnet, Lampasas, San Saba and Van Zandt counties, as well as
    Bell, Henderson, McCulloch, Travis, Bexar, Hunt, McMullen, Williamson, Blanco, Karnes, Mason, Wilson, Brown, Kaufman, Medina, Wood, Coryell, La Salle, Mills, Frio, Live Oak, Rains, Hamilton, Llano and Smith counties.

Crop Disasters 2015

Beginning January 7, 2015 USDA has declared crop disasters in at least 1,025 counties across 20  states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia and West Virginia.

Majority of the 2015 crop disaster designations so far are due to drought.

Crop Disasters 2014

In 2014, USDA declared crop disasters in at least 2,904 counties across 44 states. Most of the designations were due to drought.

Those states were:

Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan. Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. [FIRE-EARTH has documented all of the above listings. See blog content.]

i. USDA trigger point for a countywide disaster declaration is 30 percent crop loss on at least one crop.

ii. The counties designated as agricultural disaster areas, as listed above, include both primary and contiguous disaster areas.

iii. Some counties may have been designated as crop disaster areas more than once due to multiple disasters.

iv. The U.S. has a total of 3,143 counties and county-equivalents.

v. The disaster designations posted above were approved by USDA on April 8, 2015 and posted on USDA website on April 11, 2015 in a  separate declarations.

U.S. Drought Continues Spreading

drought population  impact
U.S. Drought Population Data. Source: U.S. Drought Monitor

Drought Severity
D0 – Abnormally Dry || D1 – Moderate Drought || D2 – Severe Drought|| D3 – Extreme Drought || D4 – Exceptional Drought

California plagued by fourth consecutive year of drought

With temperatures averaging more than 10°F above normal for the week, snowpacks continued to dwindle; as of April 1, the state’s total snowpack stood at a meager 5 percent of average. Indicative of the virtually non-existent snowpack, stream flows have dropped into the 5th percentile or lower over much of California. In addition, the 2014-15 Water Year has ended on an abysmal note, with precipitation over the past 30 days totaling a mere 10 percent of normal or less from Redding southward.  Continued dryness resulted in an expansion of Exceptional Drought (D4) in northwest California. [Source: U.S. Drought Monitor]

National Drought Summary – issued April 7, 2015

This week saw warmer than normal temperatures impacting roughly two-thirds of the nation. A significant storm brought abundant rain to the Ohio Valley and severe weather through that region and the Central Plains. The storm brought tornados, hail, and strong winds to over 15 states. Most of the rest of the country experienced continued dryness. Strong winds and warmer than average temperatures added short-term insult to the long-term drought impacting the Southern Plains. [Source: U.S. Drought Monitor]

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