Water Resources of the United States
Date: Thr, 16 Aug 2012 14:42:50 EDT
Summary: Drought conditions ease for the majority of Indiana but the long range forecast calls for below-average precipitation across the state.
Hydrologic Conditions: Rainfall of 2 to 5 inches in the past week has helped ease the hydrologic drought across much of Indiana. The WaterWatch below-normal streamflow map shows that the White River basin of Indiana is no longer in a hydrologic drought. The Wabash River basin shows below normal streamflow but is no longer in hydrologic drought. A portion of southeastern Indiana is still in a severe hydrologic drought. According to the National Weather Service, despite the recent rainfall, the climate trend for Indiana is still toward dryness with the current long-range forecast through October showing below-average precipitation. Many communities continue to have water restrictions and burn bands. The largest impact appears to be on agriculture - Indiana's corn production and soybean production will be much reduced from average levels of production due to the drought.
Streamgages: The Indiana Water Science Center continues to extend low-end ratings and measure gage heights of zero flow. Currently, ten streamgages are listed as dry and orifice lines have been extended where possible. 14 low flow measurements were collected over the past 7 days by Center staff.
Ground-water levels: Groundwater Watch continues to show all Indiana groundwater observation wells in the Below Normal, Much Below Normal, or Low (new low) categories. Eleven wells across the state have recorded new record low water levels.
Water-quality : The Center continues normal operation of a network of stream temperature stations,4 multi-parameter water quality stations, and 3 sediment gages anticipating that these data will be heavily used during and after the drought.
Special projects: The Center provided graphs of cumulative precipitation deficits since 1988 (one of Indiana’s most severe historic droughts) to the Indiana Departments of Commerce and Natural Resources, at the request of those agencies.
Communications and outreach : TheWSC drought page is at http://in.water.usgs.gov/drought/. A drought information sheet has been created a provided to all field staff to provide USGS information to the public and for media requests. USGS technical staff continued to answer a high volume of questions and requests for data related to the drought.
Sub-Region: Midwest; Region: Central United States