An expert with Iowa State University Extension is warning that this year’s drought is so severe, recovery may be years away. Cathann Kress is calling the drought a “super slow-motion disaster.” Kress says Iowa crops pulled what little moisture there was out of the ground this year and that moisture won’t come back anytime soon. “It takes so long for the subsoil moisture to rebuild, so if we look at the other droughts like this – there’s been three others in this century…they all took three years to fully recover from,” Kress said.
As much as 18 inches of precipitation is needed to fully recharge Iowa subsoils, according to Kress. That’s not likely to before next Spring. “The average (precipitation) between October and April is about 12 inches, so even if we hit average – which most models show we won’t – but even if we hit average, we’d be below what it is we’re predicting that we need,” Kress said.
Kress was at the statehouse last week and warned lawmakers it’s hard to estimate the economic impact of the drought, as well as the effects on state tax receipts.
352 AM CDT MON OCT 22 2012/Nat’l. Weather Service – Des Moines
EARLY THIS MORNING…PERIODS OF THUNDERSTORMS. WARMER. SOUTHEAST WIND 5 TO 10 MPH. CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS NEAR 100 PERCENT.
TODAY…CLOUDY. ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS IN THE MORNING. HIGH IN THE MID 70S. SOUTH WIND 5 TO 10 MPH. CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS 20 PERCENT.
TONIGHT…MOSTLY CLOUDY. AREAS OF FOG AFTER MIDNIGHT. LOW IN THE UPPER 50S. SOUTHWEST WIND NEAR 10 MPH.
TUESDAY…PARTLY SUNNY. HIGH IN THE UPPER 70S. SOUTH WIND 5 TO 15 MPH.
TUESDAY NIGHT AND WEDNESDAY…PARTLY CLOUDY. BREEZY. LOW IN THE LOWER 60S. HIGH AROUND 80. SOUTH WIND 5 TO 20 MPH WITH GUSTS TO AROUND 30 MPH. NEAR RECORD HIGH TEMPS POSSIBLE ON WEDNESDAY.
WEDNESDAY NIGHT...MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A 40 PERCENT CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS. LOW IN THE MID 50S.
THURSDAY…MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A 40 PERCENT CHANCE OF SHOWERS. MUCH COOLER. HIGH IN THE UPPER 50S.
SKYSCAN FORECAST SATURDAY OCTOBER 20, 2012 CHRIS PARKS
Today: Patchy Fog Early. Mostly Sunny. Calm becoming S@ 5-10. H 62.
Tonight: Partly Cloudy. SSE @ 5-10. L 46
Sunday: Mostly Sunny. S @ 10-15. H 78.
Monday: Chance Showers and T’storms. Mostly Cloudy. Light ESE. H 71.
Tuesday: Mostly Sunny. H 74.
The effects of a hot, dry and windy summer are finally coming to an end, it appears. Three more counties in the KJAN listening are rescinding their bans on open burning, as a result. Effective at Noon today (Friday, Oct. 19th), the Burn Ban in Page and Audubon Counties will no longer be in effect. Those bans had been in-place since July 19th. And, Montgomery County Emergency Management Coordinator Brian Hamman announced on his department’s Facebook page, that the Burn Ban which had been in place since July 18th, will be rescinded effective at 5-p.m. today (Friday). After today’s bans expire, only Cass, Crawford and Mills Counties will remain in a Burn Ban.
Clarinda Police Chief Keith Brothers reminds residents that even though the ban on open burning is rescinded in Page County, the City of Clarinda’s Recreational Fire Ordinance and other burn related laws, remain in effect.
The Shelby County Emergency Management Agency said today (Friday), that the Fire Danger Index in Shelby County will remain in the “Moderate” category, through Monday morning, Oct. 22nd. The field and grassland fire danger conditions will be reassessed at that time, and another report issued accordingly.
Another County in southwest Iowa is seeing a ban on open burning instituted over the summer, rescinded. Clarinda Police Chief Keith Brothers says the burn ban in Page County is being lifted effective at Noon today (Friday, October 19th). Brothers reminds residents that the City of Clarinda’s Recreational Fire Ordinance and other burn related laws, remain in effect.
Forecasters are projecting Iowa could be in for another mild winter. Meteorologist Kevin Skow, at the National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center, says the long-range forecast for December through February calls for a season ahead that echoes last winter. Skow says, “It looks like we could see temperatures that are near-normal or slightly above-normal and precipitation also below-normal so after last year’s low snowfall, it looks like there might be a chance for a repeat of last year.”
While the forecast says rainfall and snowfall will likely be below-normal across the entire state during the upcoming winter months, but Skow says one part of Iowa could face an especially dry season. “The better chance looks to be across northern Iowa but it’s a broad outlook so this could easily change over the next couple of months,” Skow says.
The report says the only part of the country that’s expected to see below-normal temperatures this winter is Florida, while the Gulf Coast is the only area expected to see above-normal precipitation. See the complete maps at: www.cpc.noaa.gov
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Parts of drought-stricken Iowa, Nebraska and much of the Midwest are expected to be warmer and drier than normal in early winter. The Des Moines Register reports that National Weather Service forecast maps issued Thursday show higher-than-normal temperatures are expected over the next three months for the western third of Iowa and all of Nebraska. But lower-than-normal moisture is expected for the eastern third of Nebraska and all of Iowa.
Mike Halpert, of the weather service’s Climate Prediction Center, says the predictions “are the weather service’s best guess, based on a variety of computer models. ” Iowa state climatologist Harry Hillaker says “the clock is ticking” on refilling Iowa’s soil with moisture before the winter freeze.
356 AM CDT FRI OCT 19 2012
TODAY…CLOUDY. SCATTERED SHOWERS IN THE MORNING…THEN ISOLATED SHOWERS EARLY IN THE AFTERNOON. BREEZY. HIGH IN THE UPPER 40S. NORTHWEST WIND 15 TO 25 MPH. CHANCE OF SHOWERS 50 PERCENT.
TONIGHT…MOSTLY CLOUDY. LOW IN THE MID 30S. NORTHWEST WIND NEAR 10 MPH.
SATURDAY…MOSTLY SUNNY. WARMER. HIGH IN THE LOWER 60S. SOUTH WIND NEAR 10 MPH.
SATURDAY NIGHT…MOSTLY CLEAR. LOW IN THE MID 40S. SOUTHEAST WIND AROUND 5 MPH.
SUNDAY…MOSTLY SUNNY. WARMER. HIGH IN THE MID 70S. SOUTH WIND 5 TO 15 MPH.
SUNDAY NIGHT…MOSTLY CLOUDY. A CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS THROUGH MIDNIGHT…THEN A SLIGHT CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS AFTER MIDNIGHT. WARMER. LOW IN THE UPPER 50S. CHANCE OF PRECIPITATION 30 PERCENT.
MONDAY…MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A SLIGHT CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS. HIGH IN THE LOWER 70S. CHANCE OF PRECIPITATION 20 PERCENT.
MONDAY NIGHT…MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A 20 PERCENT CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS. LOW IN THE MID 50S.
The State Fire Marshals Office and Iowa Department of Public Safety report Burn Bans which had been in place for Carroll and Madison Counties, were lifted this week. The bans on open burning due to the extremely dry summer conditions, were enacted in late July. Recent rains and current climate conditions prompted officials in Carroll and Madison Counties to ask for their burn bans to be rescinded. The ban was lifted in Madison County this (Thursday) morning, while the Carroll County burn ban was lifted Tuesday afternoon. And, as mentioned earlier, a burn ban in Pottawattamie County, was also rescinded, on Wednesday.