Dry conditions worsen leading to severe drought

Thursday’s report from the U.S. Drought Monitor (USDM) expand the area of moderate drought in the Northland and upgraded some areas to severe drought.

The USDM is a joint effort by National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It is updated on Thursday mornings with data from observations made at 7 a.m. CST on Tuesdays.

Drought intensity is measured in increments from D0 to D4:

  • D0 = Abnormally Dry
  • D1 = Moderate Drought
  • D2 = Severe Drought
  • D3 = Extreme Drought
  • D4 = Exceptional Drought

Thursday’s report reveals Moderate Drought conditions for the majority of northwest Wisconsin, east central Minnesota, and northeast Minnesota.

The Head of Lake Superior including the Twin Ports was upgraded to Severe Drought. Conditions improve looking north with Abnormally Dry levels being observed across Koochiching County, Itasca County, and the Iron Range.

The report summary for the Midwest said that short-term (30 to 90 day) dryness continued to worsen, leading to widespread deterioration.

Fortunately, rain in the forecast is expected to bring needed moisture to the region as we head through the weekend. Full forecast available here.