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Burn Bans

County-wide burn bans through September 1


Monthly Change in Drought Monitor Classification

U.S. Drought Monitor, August 7, 2012
U.S. Drought Monitor, August 28, 2012

Severe Valley Drought Less So than Rest of US- The Rio Grande Valley is experiencing normal precipitation for this time of year and rainfall is expected to increase with the onset of El Nino. As of right now the drought in the Valley is listed as Severe Drought.
The Brownsville Herald, Molly Jasinski, August 5, 2012

Despite More Rain, Less Heat, Big Country Water Supplies Remain Low- The numbers don’t give an accurate depiction of the extent of the drought. Lakes are still very low, as is the soil moisture content on farms. Hay prices remain high with cattle herds low, while city budget’s hurt with the lack of water income. Even though we are not as hot or dry this year as last, the drought still worsens.
Abeline Reporter News ,Brennan Peel, August 11, 2012

Wichita Falls Horse Rescue Affected by Drought and Rising Hay Prices- With the price of hay climbing to between $135 and $165 per bale, it is hard for owners to take care of their horses. Healing Hearts Horse Rescue is also feeling the pressure from the drought as costs rise
KFDX News, David Gonzalez, August 22, 2012


Wildfires Burn Near Possum Kingdom Lake- Two wildfires are currently scorching land near Possum Kingdom Lake. Both fires were caused by lightning strikes, and so far 2,000 acres have burned.
KDFW News, August 10, 2012

Austin Considers Wildfire Smoke Detectors- A new technology invented in Germany will allow fire personnel to monitor highly active sites for wildfires 24/7. It is being compared to smoke detectors for a home, but instead it will be in the forest. The Austin city council is looking into the technology and is doing research to find out how this could fit into their budget among other tools used to combat wildfires.
KEYE News, Karen Kiley, August 23, 2012

Water Supply

Drought Contingency Plan Now Active- The city of Amarillo has reached 80% use of produced water for 5 consecutive days prompting policymakers to enact the stage one drought action plan which will call for voluntary water restrictions from consumers.
KVII News, Mari Samarripas, August 2, 2012

LCRA Takes Steps to Expand Water Supplies- The Lower Colorado River Authority considers a plan to purchase 4200 acres of land in Colorado and Wharton Counties to build a reservoir to bring water to rice farmers downstream. The reservoirs will be filled by directing excess water from the Colorado River through channels.
Austin American Statesman, Farzad Mashhood, August 16, 2012

Coastal Bend Lake Levels Continue to Drop; Watering Restrictions could come soon- The combined water supply of the region has dropped to 43.7% and this could trigger mandatory water restrictions for the Coastal Bend. Ads on Local TV stations are urging people to conserve water while water employees are being trained on how to better conserve water and spot violators.
Corpus Christi Caller Times, Jessica Savage, August 20, 2012

Abilene Looks into Possible Tri-City Water Supply- the cities of Abilene, San Angelo, and Midland are discussing the possibility of partnering together to share water resources in the future. This would be cost effective and would serve the needs of the cities for many years to come.
KTAB News, Kristin Anderson, August 21, 2012

Twin Buttes Water to be Pooled Together- As water levels in the twin lakes continue to drop San Angelo is pumping water from the south pool to the north pool hoping to limit loss to evaporation at a current running cost of $230 000. The city will also attempt to mitigate water loss in O. H. Ivie Reservoir by establishing a piping system extending from the Hickory Aquifer some time by next summer.
San Angelo Standard Times, Monique Ching, August 29, 2012

Experts Share Innovations Spurred by Water Woes- The search for water in Texas is turning to creative means. Cloud seeding is an effective, yet tricky way of getting more water, while most people are searching for ways on the ground such as through exploring the uses of brackish water and desalinization. Another suggested way to conserve water is by putting a palm oil based film on lakes to limit evaporation.
San Angelo Standard Times, Matthew Waller, August 30, 2012

Agricultural Impacts

Heat Taking a Toll on Agriculture- As the summer wears on crops in Hays County are faring poorly, especially corn. The winter rains gave hope for farmers, but recently the skies have dried up, leaving corn brown and having farmers question whether or not to sell their land to developers.
San Marcos Daily Record, David Short, August 9, 2012

Lingering Drought Taking Toll on Cattle, Corn, Cotton- While the drought persists cattle herders are still keeping their herds out of state in better fields. Cotton and corn are also expected to produce low yield this year as the drought and heat take their toll.
San Angelo Standard Times, Jerry Lackey, August 11, 2012

Inclement Weather


Baylor Hospital Garage Flooding not a new Issue- During a downpour Baylor Medical Center’s parking garage flooded for the second time in 6 years impacting 20 cars that were in the garage at the time. The flooding was due to an overflow on the Hall Street drainage system. At this time Baylor Medical does not plan on fixing the issue, but city officials hope to discuss flooding and erosion control systems in November’s bond system.
KTVT News, Bud Gillett, August 20, 2012

Body of Dallas Fisherman Recovered from Creek- After several inches of rain had fallen in Dallas on Saturday fisherman Baron Dangerfield was swept away by the quick current on White Rock Creek. His body was discovered two days later on a sandbar further down the creek.
KIII News, August 20, 2012


Salvation Army Helping Homeless During Extreme Heat- As temperatures soar across North Texas the homeless are at risk for heat-related illness. This prompted the Salvation Army to set up in Fort Worth and hand out water to those less fortunate.
KTVT News, August 1, 2012

Electric Crews Brave the Heat- In order to keep the power on electric crews must work overtime in the heat. This is grueling work, but the work goes on anyway.
KXAS News, Sara Story, August 7, 2012

Heat-Related Deaths on the Rise for Illegal Immigrants- The extreme heat and drought have brought dangerous conditions for many illegal immigrants who try to trek across Texas lands into the United States. Border Patrol agents have rescued hundreds suffering from dehydration and heat exhaustion, while also finding many bodies of those who did not make it.
KIII News, August 15, 2012

Runaway Heat at a North Texas Rail Yard- Denison rail yard in Fort Worth is massive, covered in gravel, steel, and full of running engines. It also sits in a bowl allowing heat to settle in it and not move. Add in the Texas heat and it can easily be 30 degrees warmer there than the official temperatures posted for the region. This is dangerous heat for the workers and all are required to wear special protective clothing and take many breaks from the heat.
KTVT News, Jeff Ray, August 21, 2012

Severe Weather

Storms Bring Rain, Lightning to Metroplex- Storms popped up across the metroplex bringing heavy rain and lightning to the area. Flood advisories were issued for many counties and as many as 30,000 people were without power over night.
KXAS News, August 15, 2012

Severe Storm Smashes through the Panhandle Causing Flooding- A storm passed through the city of Amarillo overnight causing widespread street flooding and causing an estimated 2500 homes and businesses to lose power.
KVII News, Travis Ruiz, August 21, 2012

Other Climate Impacts

Animals/Aquatic Life

Experts Warn About Dangers of Extreme Heat with Pets- With summer on in full force veterinarians suggest watching out for pets in the heat. Animals left outside in the heat need shade and cool water to avoid heat exhaustion and should not under any circumstances be left in a car during the summer heat.
Marshal News Messenger, Hannah DeClark, August 1, 2012

Drought, Heat Bring Spiders Out- Insects are cold blooded, so in the heat they thrive. One of the most common spiders is the Brown Recluse, which is a poisonous spider which lives in homes.
CNN, Danielle Delorto, August 8, 2012

Denton County Proposes Aerial Spraying- Wind has caused a delay in the scheduled mosquito spraying from airplanes. The spraying to combat West Nile Virus is delicate and very dependent on weather. The spraying will be moved to Friday night.
KXAS News, Sara Story, August 30, 2012


Food Trailers Thrive Despite the Heat- As temperatures in downtown Austin top 100 degrees few people are willing to go outdoors to food trucks. This causes the food trailers to get creative and offer discounts in the heat of the day to lure in customers.
KXAN News, Casey James, August 2, 2012

Beat the Heat and Soaring Bills- The Public Utility Commission of Texas gives tips to reduce electricity consumption and electric bills. They suggest raising the thermostat a few degrees and closing blinds, as well as not running electrical equipment during the day.
San Marcos Daily Record, August 8, 2012

How Premont Residents Beat Record Heat- Citizens of Premont turned to the local Dairy Queen to stave off the effects of the blistering summer heat. The DQ has seen a large increase in ice cream sales this summer.
KIII News, August 14, 2012


Three Plants Standout in Heat- Many gardeners notice that in heat and drought conditions plants do not fare well, and many die. Three plants, Duranta, Cape Plumbago, and Esperanza, have thrived in the summer heat.
Amarillo Globe News, Bob Hatton, August 6, 2012

Pampa’s Trees Need Water- Pampa city parks have lost 90 trees due to the drought and it does not seem to be letting up. The parks are supplied mainly by creeks, and with rainfall limited greenery will struggle to live on.
Pronews 7, Adam Snider, August 17, 2012


Hotter than Hell 100 Training- As summer heat turns brutal trainers for the Hotter than Hell 100 need to be prepared. Hydration as well as water wicking clothing is encouraged for bicyclists to beat the heat.
KFDX News, Lindsey Wopschall, August 2, 2012

High School Football Teams Hit the Gridiron, Battle the Heat- High school football teams are returning to practice. Coaches and trainers at Prestonwood Christian Academy know what to look for and are being very cautious in the heat with their players.
The Plano Courier Star, Bill Conrad, August 10, 2012

High School Bands March to the Heat- The McKinney Boyd High School band continues practice in the relentless heat of the summer. The band rehearses outside in the morning and then moves indoors once the temperatures get warmer.
KXAS News, Andres Gutierrez, August 10, 2012

Team Keeps it Green- The Midwestern State football team needs to water its football field everyday in order to prevent the lawn from dying. The staff and volunteers hand water every day because of stage 2 water restrictions, and the university is currently seeking other ways to get water to the fields once their restriction waiver runs out.
Times Record News, Ann Work, August 16, 2012


Heat Wave Keeps Roadside Courtesy Patrols Busy- With the summer heat on vehicles tend to overheat more easily on Texas roads. This maintains a steady set of calls to Texas Courtesy Patrolmen and a steady set of problems for drivers across the state.
KTVT News, August 3, 2012

Heat Can Cause an Increase in Tire Blowouts- When it gets hot out an underinflated tire can more easily blow. A combination of low tire pressure, high speeds and high heat make it much more dangerous to drive.
KTXS News, Jennifer Kendall, August 6, 2012

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