Skip to comments.What Happens If Record Heat And Crippling Drought Cause Widespread Crop Failures - United States?
Posted on 07/03/2012 8:15:10 PM PDT by blam
What Happens If Record Heat And Crippling Drought Cause Widespread Crop Failures Throughout The United States?
July 3, 2012
It is too early to panic, but if there is not a major change in the weather very soon we could be looking at widespread crop failures throughout the United States this summer. Record heat and crippling drought are absolutely devastating crops from coast to coast. Unfortunately, this unprecedented heat wave just continues to keep going and record high temperatures continue to scorch much of the central United States. In fact, more than 2,000 record high temperatures have been matched or broken in the past week alone.
Not only that, but the lack of rainfall nationally has caused drought conditions from coast to coast. If temperatures continue to stay this high and we don't start seeing more rain, farmers and ranchers all over the nation are going to be absolutely devastated. So what happens if we do see widespread crop failures throughout the United States? That is a question that is frightening to think about.
Right now is an absolutely crucial period for corn. It is time for pollination and rainfall is desperately needed. The following is from an article recently posted on agweb.com....
With some parts of Indiana now nearing a month without significant rainfall and the critical pollination phase of corn either already started or about to begin, large crop losses appear likely for some farmers. The U.S. Department of Agriculture had been expecting a record corn harvest this year, but now the outlook is rapidly changing. The Department of Agriculture now says that 22 percent of all U.S. corn fields are in poor condition, and that number could rise significantly unless current weather patterns change.
Sadly, the corn in some areas of the country may already have been permanently damaged according to the Washington Post....
Some growers are already reporting damage to corn, which is at a critical pollination stage. In some areas, the corn already has been damaged to the point that rain may not be enough to salvage the crop, Telvent DTN analyst John Sanow said.
He and other analysts have lowered their yield estimates to an average of about 150 bushels per acre or less. That compares with the U.S. Agriculture Departments June estimate of 166 bushels per acre. Meanwhile, corn supplies are dropping at a rate not seen in many years. The following is from croplife.com....
Corn supplies in the U.S. are declining at the fastest pace since 1996 as a Midwest heat wave damages the world's largest harvest for a third consecutive year.
Bloomberg News reports that stockpiles were probably 3.168 billion bushels (80.47 million metric tons) on June 1, 47% less than on March 1 So what does all of this mean?
It means that food prices are going to rise.
Over the last month, the price of corn is up about 27 percent.
The price of wheat is also soaring. The price of September wheat is up about 26 percent since the beginning of June.
So is there hope that things can be turned around?
Unfortunately, things look quite bleak at this point. According to the Washington Post, the outlook for the rest of the growing season is very ominous....
Based on the drought outlook, the potential for further degradation is very high, and the potential to reach exceptional levels of drought where there are major crop failures is very high, said Matthew Rosencrans, a Weather Service meteorologist. The climate signals we are looking at right now dont correlate with wetness in that region.
Jay Armstrong, owner and operator of Armstong Farms in Kansas, flew his small plane over a portion of the affected area and landed with the impression that the potential damage is far worse than is commonly understood.
At this time of year, when you look down in a place like Indiana or Illinois, you should see just lush green fields, Armstrong said. I saw bare soil. I just thought to myself, the market has no idea whats coming. Those are frightening words.
Nobody wants to hear about the possibility of "major crop failures" or that "the market has no ideas what's coming".
Ranchers are being absolutely devastated by this hot, dry weather as well. The following comes from a comment that was posted on one of my recent articles by a reader identified as Cinderella Man who works in the business....
As of 6/27/12 at the Torrington WY auction 2,248 head sold in one day. Usually only a couple hundred sell at a time. Whats happening is the ranchers are trying to sell when the price is high, and they know that hay is going to be expensive in the fall. We already see ranchers from WY coming up here looking for hay. Let me put it to you this way: Last night I went with my Dad to his hayfield and he said he would be lucky if he got a third of the hay he got last year! Second I work in the feed and mineral supply business and I have seen grain feed sales through the roof. Same goes for mineral and lactation supplements. The other day a Hutterite colony bought 25 tons of grain distillers to feed their sheep.
Everywhere south of us is dry and we are catching up. People are scrambling to find corn and my elevator is one of the last places that have it. Going back to the minerals and supplements the cows are on poor grass and they have baby calves to feed. They go dry and cant produce milk for them so a rancher has to buy minerals and supplements to get the mama cow to produce milk. Sales have been soaring. You add it all up and you can only come up with the conclusion that we are in SERIOUS TROUBLE this year and I dont know how small producers like my family are going to weather this. All I can say is the ones who were in glee at Texass plight last year and crying in their beers right now. If this continues, we won't just see corn and wheat become much more expensive.
We will also see the price of meat go through the roof as well.
This is not welcome news at a time when the economy is already in really bad shape and millions of families are barely making it from month to month.
So what do you think about all of this? Do you live in an area of the country that has been affected by this weather? What do you think will happen if we see widespread crop failures throughout the United States?
Since this is “Silver Lining Week” I’ll say that at least the growers will quit bitching about not having enough illegal aliens to pick their crops. As for the local yokels in this country, they can’t gnaw on all of the absentee ballots they have coming in.
Everything will be fine..... Polidiots will just take from the red pile an give to the blue pile.
Mass starvation, survivors will forage the countryside bare in slow motion starvation, second round of mass starvation. Those who manage to make it though the winter and survive a lean spring have a chance to plant gardens and start to recover.
Those that didn’t eat their seed stock and willingly kill to defend their gardens might manage to make it through the following winter.
North Koreans eat grass...
July 3, 2012
By Douglas Main, OurAmazingPlanet
This map shows the heat wave currently sweeping across the United States with temperatures taken by a NASA satellite on June 26, 2012.
Heat is beating records around the country: the first five months of 2012 have been the hottest on record in the contiguous United States. And that's not including June, when 164 all-time high temperature records were tied or broken around the country, according to government records.
That's unusual, since the most intense heat usually comes in July and August for much of the country, said Jake Crouch, a climate scientist with National Climatic Data Center. For example, only 47 all-time high records were tied or broken in June of last year.
Also, more than 40,000 daily heat records have been broken around the country so far this year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Compare that with last year the ninth warmest on record when only 25,000 daily records had been set by this date.
In other words, the heat really is that bad. And behind the records is a set of weather and climate conditions that is keeping the heat locked in over the country, with little respite in sight.
Can't stand the heat
The warm summer follows an unusually warm winter, which was the hottest and driest that the western United States has ever seen since records have been kept, said Jeff Weber, a scientist with the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo.
The heat burning up the country right now is due in part to a persistent high pressure system, also called a heat ridge or dome, which parked itself over the mountain west, and has now shifted east into the Midwest and Southeast. The system is unfortunately stuck in place, Weber said, because of a slowdown of the North Atlantic Oscillation, a climate pattern that pulls weather patterns eastward across the country.
This "blocking" of the Atlantic has caused the jet stream, which normally ferries air from west to east across the United States, to buckle and trap heat in the Midwest and Southeast, Weber told OurAmazingPlanet.
High and dry
That's not unusual in the summer, said National Weather Service meteorologist Greg Carbin. But this pattern of hot air does cover a broader area than usual, and the total amount of hot air is greater, stretching higher up in the atmosphere than normal, he said.
Dry soils, in part a product of the dry winter, exacerbate the heat. "If the soils were wetter, more energy would be absorbed by the water and the daily high temperatures wouldn't be as warm," Crouch told OurAmazingPlanet. For example, southern Georgia and Florida, drenched by Tropical Storm Debby, haven't been as hot as areas to the north in the last week or so.
Unfortunately, the heat doesn't look likely to dissipate soon, with the National Weather Service expecting warmer-than-usual temperatures to continue for the remainder of the summer across much of the country.
The southwest and Rocky Mountains could be in for a reprieve soon, however, thanks to the beginning of the North American monsoon, which is predicted to start bringing moisture and cooler temperatures into the area later this week, Weber said.
The early heat waves of summer following higher temperatures in spring and winter could also be part of a pattern of climate change.
"It's consistent with what we'd expect in a warming climate, but it's hard to quantify any effect climate change might have on an individual event like this heat wave," Crouch said.
While only one heat wave cannot by itself be linked to climate change, a significant increase in these types of events over time could be a hallmark of a warming planet. "An increasing frequency of heat waves that's one aspect of climate change you can point to," Carbin said.
Over the past few years, daily record high temperatures have been outpacing daily record lows by 2-to-1 on average, according to the website Climate Central. A 2009 study found that if the climate were not warming, that ratio would be expected to be even. So far this year, there have been 40,113 high temperature records set or tied, compared with just 5,835 cold records, a ratio of about 7-to-1.
"This could be a harbinger of things to come," Weber said.
Is this the first time there’s ever been a drought or heatwave in this country?
The easy and correct answer is to put all of the corn that is produced into the ethanol pipeline and do not release any of it for making into food for people or animal feed.
That way we will have 1) more ethanol (that causes cars to get worse mileage than using pure gasoline; and 2) less food for people to eat to make them fat, thus helping to reduce the obesity epidemic in this nation.
We’ll still have ethanol...
I’d say: a person had better think about some major planning.
I knew a hot dry summer was in store when the only snow we saw here in sw PA was last Oct. Spring was unusually dry, its no surprise a lot of states have raging wildfires already and now with the crops, health care, the economy and the middle east blowing up we got ourselves in a nice little mess.
Heavens no. It’s just the first time everyone can talk about it via technology and the news seems worse and spreads faster.
The Dust Bowl of the 1930s is one of the best examples. Look up US droughts online.
It may be the first time the whackos say it was caused by global warming, though.
There have been major crop damages already this year. They were caused by unusual cold following unusual warmth earlier in the year. The jet stream has been bending north and south more dramatically and that has cause the hot spots to come and go in the Midwest and east. Overall though the west has been colder then normal for at least a year.
Climate change? Look at the records for 1987-88 and for the mid 30’s. A lot of similarities.
We got a great deal on corn today.... 6 ears for a buck.
We will likely buy more tomorrow and freeze a few ears.
Oh, and because of the global warming, or the global freezing, the sky is falling and we are all going to die.
I generally know science, I’m more into electronics myself so I will plead ignorance here but is there a way to water crops artificially? Can you get a bunch of guys and hoses, hook them up to a spigot and let er rip? How about loading one of those planes they use to fight fires with a load of water and dump them on the crops, will that work? Just curious and trying to come up with ideas as I brainstorm. Maybe we can be like Saudi Arabia and turn seawater into fresh water and move it inland to use on crops.
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