Drought spreads across three-quarters of Washington, half of Oregon
Drought spreads across three-quarters of Washington, half of Oregon.
Drought conditions are spreading rapidly across Washington and Oregon, federal officials reported Thursday, though cooler and wetter weather is expected to settle over the Northwest during the last half of September.
A moderate drought prevails over 77 percent of Washington, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor, while the northern 43 percent of Oregon has fallen into a moderate drought.
Two weeks ago, less than 2 percent of Washington was in a drought, while no part of Oregon was in a drought.
“That area is above-normal (precipitation) as opposed to the rest of the state,” Bumbaco said.
Some 43 percent of the streams monitored by the U.S. Geological Survey were running below normal Thursday, up from 16 percent one month before.
In Oregon, most livestock were being fed hay because of poor pasture conditions, the USDA reported.
In Idaho, 19 percent of the state is in drought, while 8 percent of California is in drought.
Federal climatologists said that over last three months most areas west of the Rockies have been extraordinarily dry, but that pattern is expected to change.
Unusually heavy rains are expected in southwest Oregon.