DROUGHT OUTLOOK: Snow Not So Helpful
If there’s a silver lining to every cloud, the up-side to all this snow, ice and freezing rain is that it’s putting a dent in the drought – right?
“You know when you’re in a drought, you’ll take whatever you can get in whatever form you might get it,” says State Climatologist, Harry Hillaker.
Northwest Iowa remains in an extreme drought. Central Iowa is in a severe drought. The rest of the state is experiencing a moderate drought.
The precipitation we received in the last week will help fill rivers and ponds, but Hillaker says we need a lot more snow – a whole lot more – to restore soil moisture.
“Which would be about 140 inches of snow – 12 feet of snow… so that’s not gonna happen. Or at least we hope it’s not going to happen.”
Hillaker says Iowa as a whole needs about 12 inches of moisture to bring it out of the drought. The January 29th snowfall only adds up to about half an inch.
“The snow is not going to be the solution.”
The solution will hopefully come in early March, when the ground thaws and the precipitation comes in the form of rain.