120 degrees hit South Dakota this summer and not since the Dust Bowl era has July been so hot. America uses 80% of all its fresh water to produce
food and when that resource can no longer meet demand, we shall enter a period of famine.
A man holds up a catfish carcass in the dried-out Moreau River on the Cheyenne River Indian reservation near Thunder Butte, South Dakota August 7,
2006. A severe drought has killed crops, left ideal conditions for wildfires, forced ranchers to sell cattle and has evoked memories of the Dust Bowl
disaster in the 1930s. Picture taken August 7, 2006.
Ravages Farmland on Plains
NYTimes: August 29, 2006
MITCHELL, S.D. — With parts of South Dakota at its epicenter, a severe drought has slowly sizzled a large swath of the Plains States, leaving
farmers and ranchers with conditions that they compare to those of the Dust Bowl of the 1930’s
The drought has led to rare and desperate measures. Shrunken sunflower plants, normally valuable for seeds and oil, are being used as a makeshift feed
for livestock. Despite soaring fuel costs, some cattle owners are hauling herds hundreds of miles to healthier feedlots. And many ranchers are pouring
water into “dugouts” — natural watering holes — because so many of them (up to 90 percent in South Dakota, by one reliable estimate) have gone
“It’s a grim situation,” said Herman Schumacher, the owner of a livestock market in Herreid, S.D., a small town near the North Dakota line where
37,000 head of cattle were sold from May through July, compared with 7,000 in the corresponding three months last year. “There’s absolutely no
grass in the pastures, and the water holes are all dried up. So a lot of people have no choice but to sell off their herds and get out of the
business.”Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
There isn't too many old timers left from the 30's Dust Bowl
era. Lessons of the past have faded
off into whispers and much of its water conservation wisdom lost. Now we begin a new Dust Bowl Era and its lessons shall repeat.
Dust bowl days stay in memories
NOAA Drought Information Center
Dirt invaded everything. It burrowed under fingernails, snuggled into the pores of skin, blackened the sky so dark buses and cars halted in their path
and people dared not leave their homes, he said.
“It colored everything that they did. It was never out of their mind that it could happen again,”
said Bundy, who presides over a
university collection of photographs and documentation of the era.
“Anybody who lived through that, they changed,” he said.Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
Have we exceeded our capacity to maintain the world's standard of living?
Some say yes and it's all downhill from here.
Drought, water worries cloud skies for US farmers
As the United States bakes in one of the hottest summers since the Dust Bowl years of the 1930s, drought from the Dakotas to Arizona through Alabama
has sharpened the focus of farmers on their lifeline: water.
"Farmers aren't going to be able to produce enough food to feed the world because there's a finite amount of water left in the world. There are
many folks that will tell you the next war will not be over gold, silver or land, it will be over water
," said Ed Burchfield, director of
facilities for Valmont Industries, which makes irrigation equipment.Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
• Dust Bowl 2006? More Than 60 Percent of US in Drought
• Texas drought losses top $4 billion mark
• Kansas future looks bleak without water
• Drought leaves Dakotas in dust
• Drought Impacting Southwest Ag
• USDA: Dryness Continues in PNW
The US is a world leader in agricultural production per capita and a prolonged drought will probably not affect
until 2007. So we still have time to fill
those pantries, before price shocks hit the food markets.
Climate Prediction Center - Seasonal Outlooks
[edit on 29-8-2006 by Regenmacher]