CASPER, Wyo. — The U.S. Drought Monitor released reports on Thursday indicating that much of the western United States is experiencing drought conditions.
That includes Natrona County where most of the county is experiencing “extreme drought” conditions. Drought categories range from “none” to “exceptional drought.”
Areas experiencing “extreme drought,” such as most of Natrona may experience extreme crop or pasture loss and widespread water shortages and restrictions, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.
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The U.S. Drought Monitor explains all of their drought categories as follows (with percentage of area in Wyoming experiencing that level of drought as of Dec. 1):
- D0 – Abnormally Dry (8.4% of Wyoming
- Short-term dryness slowing planting, growth of crops
- Some lingering water deficits
- Pastures or crops not fully recovered
- D1 – Moderate Drought (31.6% of Wyoming)
- Some damage to crops, pastures
- Some water shortages developing
- Voluntary water-use restrictions requested
- D2 – Severe Drought (30% of Wyoming)
- Crop or pasture loss likely
- Water shortages common
- Water restrictions imposed
- D3 – Extreme Drought (25.4% of Wyoming)
- Major crop/pasture losses
- Widespread water shortages or restrictions
- D4 – Exceptional Drought (0.4% of Wyoming)
- Exceptional and widespread crop/pasture losses
- Shortages of water creating water emergencies
Much of the southwest United States is experiencing the highest level of drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor: