Record Northwest Drought Imperils US Wheat Crop

cc Flickr USDA NRCS Montana, modified,

Drought continues to ravage the western continental United States, with a wide band of intense heat and below-average precipitation stretching from Canada all the way into Mexico. The past week saw worsening conditions across the Pacific Northwest, where 30-day average temperatures are well over 8 degrees Fahrenheit hotter than their historical averages.

Among Northwest states, Washington is reporting that around 40% of its districts are experiencing extreme-to-exceptional levels of drought (one level below the USDA’s most severe ranking), up around 5% from last week. Over 54% of Oregon is similarly parched, up 8% in a week; 33% of Idaho, up 9%; and 36% of Montana, up over 9%.

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