MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The rain that’s fallen across parts of the state over the last few weeks is finally showing a positive impact on the state’s drought forecast. The latest figures show that just 65% of the state is still listed under severe drought conditions, a 23% reduction in just the last week.
The latest update Thursday from the U.S. Drought Monitor shows that about 58% of the state is under extreme drought, which is also a drop from recent weeks.
However, the area of the state experiencing exceptional drought, a swath of northwestern Minnesota, only dropped by 1%, and is still representing 7% of the total state area. This was the first year that exceptional drought has been recorded in Minnesota since figures began being tracked in 1999.
There were significant reductions in the amount of SEVERE & EXTREME drought across the state, especially in central & southern MN.
Northern MN remains parched.
More rain today & tonight! pic.twitter.com/F2KDy20eJC
— Mike Augustyniak (@MikeAugustyniak) September 2, 2021
Only southeastern Minnesota and a few border areas are experiencing reasonably normal conditions.
Adding to the good news, there remains a number of days in the forecast that call for the potential for rain. Meteorologist Riley O’Connor says the clouds will cool things down a bit Thursday and temperatures shouldn’t get much higher than the low- to mid-70s. Then, rain will be on and off in the afternoon, evening and into Friday morning.