Missouri’s Drought Assessment Committee has been activated to see how bad things are in 23 counties and to watch conditions develop in 65 more counties. Only 28 Missouri counties are not on a drought list of one kind or another.
The twenty-three drought counties are in eastern and southeastern Missouri. Sixty-five more are not there yet but are being watched by the Drought Assessment Committee, which is made up of 14 state and federal agencies plus local agencies and organizations and individuals.
Committee member Steve McIntosh with the natural resources department says each agency will report on the impact of the drought on its interest. For example, the Department of Conservation will report on streams and other recreation needs while the Public Drinking Water divinizing of DNR will be report on those conditions.
The committee can’t make it rain, but it can coordinate relief efforts. He says the committee also can recommend water conservation measures for local governments to enact if the drought deepens.
McIntosh thinks the drought that has plagued the southeastern states for some time has spread into Missouri. He says hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico that could have brought rain to the area have been disappointments.