skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Minnesota public safety agencies reeling from weekend tragedy; Speaker Johnson faces critical decision on Ukraine aid; Public comment sought on proposal to limit growth in health-care costs; MS postal union workers voice concerns about understaffing, mail delays.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Truckers for Trump threaten to strike over his massive civil fine for business fraud in New York City. Biden wants Norfolk Southern held accountable one year after an Ohio derailment and dangerous chemical spill and faith leaders call for peace in the Israel-Hamas war.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Drones over West Texas aim to improve rural healthcare, the Ogallala Aquifer, the backbone of High Plains agriculture, is slowly disappearing and federal money is headed to growers of wool and cotton.

Wet Spring Soaks Iowa Drought

play audio
Play

Friday, May 26, 2023   

For the first time in nearly three years, the widespread drought that has had Iowa in its grip is predicted to end. The latest drought outlook says the tinder-dry weather pattern will lift later this year.

The last time no part of Iowa was abnormally dry was in April 2020, according to the federal Climate Prediction Center's latest seasonal outlook. Justin Glisan, Iowa's state climatologist, said much wetter-than-normal spring weather, including the severe weather events that came with it, will kickstart the state's long climb back from the drought.

"Three years of precipitation deficits stacking up to 25 inches below average," he said. "We've started to put a dent in those longer-term deficits. We're seeing improvement, and contraction of the drought region."

May and June are normally Iowa's wettest months, and Glisan said the precipitation is still "ramping up." He added that this will be good for farmers who are planting crops and can look forward to more moisture than they've had recently.

Parts of Iowa have seen rainfall up to 6 inches above normal recently. Glisan said it's being driven by the El Niño weather pattern that is expected to intensify in the coming weeks. El Niño results from warmer-than-normal Pacific Ocean temperatures near the equator, and causes more rain in the Midwest. That's a positive for farmers, he said, as opposed to the La Niña pattern, which creates drier conditions in the region.

"We're moving in the right direction, trend-wise, in terms of the large-scale atmospheric setup that would support more rainfall during the growing season," he said, "as opposed to those La Nina signals that we had for the last three years."

Ironically, despite the pervasive drought, Iowa corn yield averages in the past two years have been among the state's highest in history.


get more stories like this via email

more stories
Studies show a correlation between ample tree canopy in urban areas and reduced heat-related ambulance calls during extreme heat events. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

A new online tool is helping community groups in Boston ensure all neighborhoods reap the benefits from urban tree canopies. The Tree Equity Score …


Environment

play sound

Farming trend researchers are poring over new federal data that only come around every five years. The latest information helps some organizations …

Social Issues

play sound

The risk first responders face is getting renewed focus following the fatal shooting of two police officers and a paramedic in Minnesota. Amid …


More than two dozen states have legalized the sale of raw, unpasteurized milk, according to the CDC. (Adobe Stock)

play sound

West Virginia House delegates passed a bill this week that would allow raw milk products from farmers to be sold directly to consumers. Maria Moles…

Health and Wellness

play sound

Health plan premiums and deductibles have risen sharply in recent years - so the state Office of Health Care Affordability is proposing to limit growt…

Social Issues

play sound

Kentucky saw a 48% reduction in child victims of maltreatment from 2018 to 2022, according to the latest federal data. However, child abuse and …

Social Issues

play sound

The Colorado Avalanche has teamed up with Xcel Energy to generate funds to help people struggling to pay their energy bills this winter. Every time …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021