Drought

8:44am

Thu June 19, 2014
Environment

Parts Of Southeast Colorado Drier Than The Dust Bowl

Entrance to the town of Rocky Ford, which is experiencing a longer dry period longer than it did during the Dust Bowl.
Luke Runyon KUNC

Parts of Southeast Colorado are experiencing a longer period of drought than the dry times that occurred during the Dust Bowl.

According to Nolan Doesken, the state climatologist, the past three years and eight months have been the driest stretch ever recorded for some parts of the state, including Rocky Ford, La Junta and Ordway.

"It was drier than the worst consecutive drought period of the 30s and of the 50s," said Doesken.

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5:00am

Fri June 13, 2014
Agriculture

Drought Continues To Hammer Great Plains Wheat

Farmer Jim Haarberg of Imperial, Neb., compares the heads of wheat from two different stalks to demonstrate the stunting effects of drought.
Ariana Brocious Harvest Public Media

Much of the Midwest and the Plains have been battling drought for years. And the current winter wheat crop looks like it will be one of the worst in recent memory, stressing farmers in the heart of the Wheat Belt – from Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado and Nebraska.

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1:19am

Wed May 21, 2014
The Salt

Double Trouble For Coffee: Drought And Disease Send Prices Up

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 7:29 am

A fully formed coffee berry, left, is shown next to a damaged coffee berry due to drought, at a coffee farm in Santo Antonio do Jardim, Brazil on Feb. 6.
Paulo Whitaker Reuters/Landov

If you're drinking a cup of coffee right now, treasure it. The global supply of coffee beans may soon shrink because of problems in coffee-growing areas of Brazil and Central America.

With supply threatened and demand strong, prices are taking flight. Wholesale coffee prices are up more than 60 percent since January — from $1.25 per pound of bulk Coffea arabica beans to $1.85 this week.

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5:00am

Tue May 20, 2014
Cattle

Drought And Foreign Markets Keep Beef Prices High

A calf outside of Scottsbluff Nebraska, an area that is seeing a cattle boom.
Credit Luke Runyon / KUNC

California ranchers, despite near-record beef prices, are shrinking their cattle herds in response to one of the most severe droughts the state has ever faced, and many Colorado ranchers are taking advantage.

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1:26am

Tue April 22, 2014
The Salt

Fields And Farm Jobs Dry Up With California's Worsening Drought

Originally published on Wed April 23, 2014 4:47 pm

Recent rains kept Suzanne and Mike Collins' orange grove alive, but the rainy season is ending. If they don't get federal irrigation water by this summer, their trees will start dying.
Kirk Siegler/NPR

On a recent afternoon on the main drag of Orange Cove, Calif., about a dozen farm workers gather on the sidewalk in front of a mini-mart.

One man sits on a milk crate sipping a beer. A few others scratch some lotto tickets. Salvador Perez paces back and forth with his hands stuffed in the pockets of his jeans.

If there is no water, there's no work, he says in Spanish.

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