South Texas drought nears record levels

July 11, 2009 at 10:20 AM
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SAN ANTONIO, July 11 (UPI) -- A drought in southern Texas is going beyond bad and is reaching historic -- and costly -- proportions, agricultural officials say.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says San Antonio, Texas, has experienced its driest 22-month period ever through June, with less than 24 inches of rain since September 2007, the San Antonio Express-New reported Saturday.

"This is about as bad as it gets," Bryan Davis, a Bexar County, Texas, extension service agent and farmer told the newspaper. "We can't catch a break."

Atascosa County, Texas, extension service agent Joe Taylor reckoned the situation is moving past just equaling the severity of legendary droughts in the 1950s, saying, "In fact, this drought may be the drought of record before long."

The economic losses from the drought were estimated at $1 billion in March, and have since moved well past that, experts from Texas A&M University told the Express-News, and has a chance to become the sate's costliest in Texas' modern history. Without strong rains soon, they said, the tab for lost cattle and crops could climb past the $4.1 billion mark set in the 2006 drought.

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Topics: Texas A&M
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