Drought News Summary August 2012 (It’s Bad)

The 2012 drought has gotten so bad, that it may rank with the dustbowl years as one of the worst on record for farmers. Here is a news summary that gives an overview of the situation from a number of sources. And you may also be interested in our page of compiled resources on Managing Drought - Philip Bump of Gristmill has put together a compendium of stories about this year’s drought from such sources as Weather.com, The New York Times, NPR, NBC News, Reuters and more. “Because the situation is so remorselessly and unrelentingly dire and because there is so much of it”, Bump’s compendium includes a “drought-assessment index, which ranks the various news stories on several indicators including “maps and charts”, “images of farmers or crops”, and “level of cause for concern”. All in all, it’s a rather interesting (and depressing) summary. - Daily Kos also recently put together a summary of drought related articles in a piece entitled: "Worst Drought in 50 Years..." - According to a story from FarmProgress.com, "the nation's crop insurers are reassuring farmers that companies will have the money necessary to quickly pay out claims in 2012" despite the fact that 2011 saw record weather related loss payouts (totaling $11 billion). This may be good news for those commodity crop farmers who have insurance, but not all farmers are covered. - And a Blomberg story suggests that drought related food price increases may be sufficient to stifle consumer spending over the next year enough to significantly weaken the already fragile American economy. Drought Map 2012

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