Neda Simeonova is editorial director of Water & Wastes Digest. Simeonova can be reached at or 847.391.1011.
Jul 16, 2012

Devastating Drought

Drought is typically associated with states in the South or Southwest. It may come as a surprise to learn that persistent drought has been devastating corn and soybean crops in southern and eastern portions of the Midwest.

Approximately two-thirds of the Midwest region has been dealing with some stage of drought, according to the July 10 Drought Monitor, a weekly report on drought throughout the country. The region has been hit with temperatures exceeding 100°F and no significant rainfall in June and into July.

Grain prices have jumped sharply since mid-June, with corn prices at the Chicago Board of Trade rising 47%, according to a report. 

As a result, some water districts have had to ask customers to implement voluntary water conservation measures. These measures include: voluntarily implementing an alternate day (odd/even) schedule for outdoor watering; watering outdoors between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m.; limiting or eliminating outdoor water use on the weekends; using a soaker hose to water plants more efficiently; and more.

Water & Wastes Digest would like to know if your area has been affected by drought this season. E-mail us at to share the conservation measures your utility has taken.