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Water Summary Update: Some improvement in drought conditions despite below normal May rainfall

  • 6/9/2022 2:15:00 PM
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DES MOINES - Iowa’s precipitation in May was 3.46 inches, 1.38 inches below normal for the month, according to the latest Water Summary Update.

While there was some improvement in drought conditions, a small area of severe drought remains in and around Woodbury County. Soil moisture, streamflow and groundwater conditions show some improvement as well, but also reflect the dry conditions existing in northwest Iowa.  

"Rainfall in Iowa for May should have been close to five inches, but we only ended up with 3.5 inches. Some improvement to drought conditions were seen, but parts of northwest Iowa are still dry,” said Tim Hall, DNR’s coordinator of hydrology resources. “While the state has received nearly normal rainfall for the year so far, northwest Iowa is running 2.3 inches behind for 2022, which is leading to concern as we enter the months of high water use.” 

For a thorough review of Iowa’s water resource trends, go to

The report is prepared by technical staff from Iowa DNR, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, IIHR—Hydroscience and Engineering, and the U.S. Geological Survey, in collaboration with Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management Department.