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Thursday, February 23, 2017

Moderate Drought in Parts of Midwest

Drought map of the Midwestern United States for February 23rd, 2017 — from the U.S. Drought Monitor @

While small parts of Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, and Oklahoma in the UNITED STATES currently have Extreme droughts (thankfully not California*), areas in Midwestern states are experiencing no droughts, minor dryness ("Abnormally Dry" category), or Moderate droughts. Abnormally dry areas are yellow, while Moderate-drought areas are tan. Almost 49.6% of Missouri and parts of Adams, Calhoun, Greene, Morgan, and Scott counties in west-central Illinois are burdened with a Moderate drought. Communities included in this Moderate-drought region include Columbia, Jefferson City, Joplin, Kansas City, Moberly, Saint Joseph, and outskirts of Saint Louis in Missouri and Jacksonville and Pittsfield in Illinois. Yellow-shaded areas of minor dryness include central and southern Illinois, southwestern Indiana, southeastern Iowa, western Kentucky (Ballard, McCracken, Livingston, Crittenden, Union, and Henderson counties), and almost 96% of Missouri.

* Thanks to heavy rain starting off the 2017 year, about 62% of California is free from drought and abnormal dryness, compared to only 0.43% a year ago. While almost 38.5% of California experienced a long-term Exceptional drought on Feb. 23rd, 2016, there are now no regions in the Golden State with this severe drought level. Areas west of Santa Barbara and near Yuma, Arizona currently have a Severe drought, which is a level below Extreme.

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