The Effects Of Drought On The Southern United States

2017 Words Aug 14th, 2016 9 Pages
There is an alarming situation emerging in the Southwestern United States where record setting drought conditions persist and the forecast for the future warns of continued drought conditions. Effects of the drought are as visible as they are alarming; Lake Mead, one of the largest reservoirs in this region is well below its high water mark leaving officials to wondering how they can continue to provide both water and electricity to the region. According to the National Climate Assessment 2014, ninety-two percent of this region uses irrigation to water crops accounting for seventy-nine percent of the water withdrawals (Garfin). In addition, a study by NASA concludes droughts in the Southwest United States may be longer and drier than previous droughts in the last one thousand years (Cole). The ongoing drought in the Southwestern United States is driving water reserves to dangerously low levels, adversely affecting an agricultural system that will have ripple effects throughout the entire country, unless the farmers of this region can learn to farm without water they may not survive.5
In order to understand drought we must first understand what drought means. Drought is defined by Merriam-Webster dictionary as “A period of dryness especially when prolonged; specifically: one that causes extensive damage to crops or prevents their successful growth” (Merriam-Webster).The southwestern United States is considered, for the most part, an arid region. That doesn’t mean that it is a…
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