drought News

Bigger and More Frequent Wildfires Burning Western U.S.

Wildfires across the western United States have been getting bigger and more frequent over the last 30 years, according to a new study. The number of wildfires over 1,000 acres in size in the region stretching from Nebraska to California …

California Drought Spawns Well Drilling Boom

The scarcity of irrigation water in drought-stricken California has created such a demand for well drilling services that Central Valley farmer Bob Smittcamp is taking matters into his own hands. He’s buying a drilling rig for $1 million to make …

Oklahoma on a Tornado-Less Streak: 8 Months Without One

Oklahoma hasn’t had a tornado or a tornado warning for more than eight months, though it is doubtful Oklahoma will be able to match its longest streak ever without a twister. Things have been unusually quiet through the first three …

Tumbleweeds Overrun Drought-Riddled Areas of Colorado

An expected effect of drought has caught parts of the West off guard. Mini-storms of tumbleweed have invaded the drought-stricken prairie of southern Colorado, blocking rural roads and irrigation canals, and briefly barricading homes and an elementary school. The invasion …

Idaho’s Elmore County Disaster Area: USDA

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has added a southern Idaho county to its list of Idaho regions considered natural disaster areas because of drought. The department designated Elmore County a primary natural disaster area, making farmers and ranchers in the …

Drought Prompts CalFire to Beef Up Seasonal Ranks Early

The threat of wildfire heightened by the state’s drought has prompted CalFire to beef up its seasonal firefighting ranks ahead of schedule. CalFire spokesman Daniel Berlant tells the Santa Rosa Press Democrat that several hundred seasonal firefighters are being brought …

Snowpack In California, Colorado Being Measured by NASA

The snowpack atop mountain peaks in California and Colorado has a new set of eyes watching from high above to better gauge the amount of water that will rumble down rivers and streams each spring as runoff. In a new …

Front Brings 1,000-Foot Wall of Dust to West Texas

A wall of dust as tall as 1,000 feet and 200 miles wide that roared across parts of West Texas and New Mexico is yet another sign of how rain-starved the region is. National Weather Service meteorologist Charles Aldrich in …

California Storms Didn’t End Drought, Says Task Force

The state’s Drought Task Force says two recent storms that washed over drought-stricken California were welcome, but that the state still needs a lot more rain. California Natural Resources Agency Secretary John Laird said Tuesday that the state needs a …

California Farmers Hire Dowsers To Find Water

With California in the grips of drought, farmers throughout the state are using a mysterious and some say foolhardy tool for locating underground water: dowsers, or water witches. Practitioners of dowsing use rudimentary tools – usually copper sticks or wooden …