The western half of the United States is experiencing a prolonged mega-drought, which, according to experts, may be observed not only in this decade, but in the 2030s, Newsweek wrote. Experts warn that such developments can lead to “disastrous consequences” for the entire country.
The western half of the United States is currently experiencing a prolonged mega-drought which is creating a serious strain on water resources across the region, Newsweek reported.
According to experts, if this continues over the next 10-20 years, it could lead to “disastrous consequences” for the entire country.
The latest U.S. Drought Monitor data show that 65 percent of the continental U.S. is experiencing some form of drought or abnormally dry conditions. Utah, Oregon, Nebraska, Kansas and Oklahoma are among the hardest hit states, all of which have areas suffering from “extreme drought.”
Heavy rains over the past few weeks in the western U.S. have helped remedy the situation in some regions, especially California, where areas suffering from extreme drought are virtually nonexistent. But despite the rainy weather and flooding, more than 40 percent of that state is still thought to be suffering from a “severe” drought, and over time, much more rain will be needed to fill reservoirs and replenish groundwater supplies.
Experts told Newsweek that the water shortage in the western U.S. is caused not only by climate change, but also by the increasing demand for it from a growing population and other ways to use it, such as in agriculture.
According to the article, if current trends continue, the drought will continue to affect the United States both directly in some regions, where there will not be enough water for homes, businesses and farms, and indirectly through higher food prices, as a huge amount of food is produced in the western half of the United States.