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Texas drought conditions worsenTexas drought conditions worsen

Drought continues into third year.Conditions are worse than a year ago.Reservoir levels are declining.

Ron Smith 1

May 15, 2013

1 Min Read
<p> U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR Map shows seriousness of Texas drought.</p>

And the drought goes on.

The weekly Texas Drought Report, developed for the 83rd Texas Legislature, shows 99 percent of the state currently in drought status and 13 percent in exceptional drought, the worst drought category.

“Eleven of the 20 municipal reservoir systems that we track across the state are less than 50 percent full,” the report states.

The report is virtually unchanged from last week, with almost 99 percent of the state in drought status, but the drought has worsened. Three months ago 90 percent of the state was in drought status, and a year ago 83 percent of Texas was considered in drought.

Currently, state reservoirs are at 66 percent, the same as last week and down one percentage point from three months ago but down from 78 percent this time last year. “Normally, statewide reservoirs are at 85 percent this time of year,” the report reads.

“Groundwater levels continue to decline in most of the state with drought accelerating the rate of decline in many areas. Most of the increased declines are due to higher pumping rates during drought.”


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About the Author(s)

Ron Smith 1

Senior Content Director, Farm Press/Farm Progress

Ron Smith has spent more than 40 years covering Sunbelt agriculture. Ron began his career in agricultural journalism as an Experiment Station and Extension editor at Clemson University, where he earned a Masters Degree in English in 1975. He served as associate editor for Southeast Farm Press from 1978 through 1989. In 1990, Smith helped launch Southern Turf Management Magazine and served as editor. He also helped launch two other regional Turf and Landscape publications and launched and edited Florida Grove and Vegetable Management for the Farm Press Group. Within two years of launch, the turf magazines were well-respected, award-winning publications. Ron has received numerous awards for writing and photography in both agriculture and landscape journalism. He is past president of The Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association and was chosen as the first media representative to the University of Georgia College of Agriculture Advisory Board. He was named Communicator of the Year for the Metropolitan Atlanta Agricultural Communicators Association. More recently, he was awarded the Norman Borlaug Lifetime Achievement Award by the Texas Plant Protection Association. Smith also worked in public relations, specializing in media relations for agricultural companies. Ron lives with his wife Pat in Johnson City, Tenn. They have two grown children, Stacey and Nick, and three grandsons, Aaron, Hunter and Walker.

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