Concerns over farms, water systems grow as drought spreads

Since Gov. Mike Parson activated a committee earlier this month to assess the drought in the state, drought conditions have spread to more counties. Fifty-two of the state’s 114 counties are affected by the lack of precipitation. About 2.6 million people live in areas hit by drought.

An updated drought map, released Thursday, shows northwest and north-central Missouri have been hit hardest, with much of areas regions facing “extreme drought,” the second-worst level on the drought intensity scale.

Conditions have some farmers worried about having adequate feed for cattle. In response, the state is letting herds graze in areas traditionally not allowed. The state also has earmarked $2 million to help plant cover crops to improve feed.

Dry conditions are also taxing public water systems in Kansas City and northwest Missouri. In some places, like Hamilton, conservation measures have been enacted. Other municipalities, like Cameron, are temporarily drawing water from alternative reservoirs.

Read more: St. Louis Post-Dispatch


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