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mackdaddy

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Member since: Tue Nov 16, 2004, 12:43 AM
Number of posts: 1,424

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Another new weather disaster: a "Flash Drought" in Montana and the Dakotas.

Now we can add a quick acting (3 Months) drought to the new weather disasters like "Rain Bomb" storms and "derecho" wind storms. This is what is being blamed on the Wheat crop losses there.

The drought already has far-reaching effects. In eastern Montana, America’s current-largest wildfire continues to smolder; the 422-square-mile Lodgepole complex fire is one-third the size of Rhode Island. It’s Montana’s largest fire since 1910.
Across the state, 17 other large fires are also spreading. “We haven’t even hit our normal peak fire season yet,” Fransen says.

Recently, as the climate has warmed and crop suitability has shifted, the Dakotas and Montana have surpassed Kansas as the most important wheat-growing region in the country. The High Plains is now a supplier of staple grain for the entire world. According to recent field surveys, more than half of this year’s harvest may already be lost.

......
But this drought is an anomaly, a “flash drought.” It essentially came from nowhere. It didn’t exist just three months ago.

The frequency of these rapid-onset droughts is expected to increase as the planet warms. A recent study focusing on China found that flash droughts more than doubled in frequency there between 1979 and 2010.


http://grist.org/food/flash-drought-could-devastate-half-the-high-plains-wheat-harvest/
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