December 2, 2021

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Half the country is facing an apocalyptic summer

6 min read


Deep drought and early heat waves are setting the western half of the United States up for a dry, fiery summer.

About 91% of the West was in drought as of June 22, with 55% experiencing extreme or exceptional drought, while two back-to-back heat waves exacerbated the drying of soils and vegetation, increasing the potential for wildfires. Meanwhile, water supplies are dwindling: Lake Mead, the reservoir formed by the Hoover Dam, is the lowest it has been since the 1930s when it was first filled, and California’s reservoirs are 50% lower than usual for this time of year, according to the Associated Press.



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