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Water summary update for 2022 - Third year in a row of drought

  • 1/5/2023 2:02:00 PM
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DES MOINES — 2022 ended on a good note, with December’s precipitation above normal.  While the precipitation numbers for November and December were encouraging, the state of Iowa saw its third year in a row of drought conditions. Wetter fall months have been common over the past few years, but despite recent wet months, precipitation deficits for the year are more than 8 inches. Streamflow, soil moisture, and shallow groundwater conditions are showing some improvement, but more rainfall is needed.

“The above-normal moisture in the last months of 2022 is good news, but the deficits for the year are still significant. We need more moisture throughout the winter and spring months to make a significant impact on drought conditions in Iowa,” said Tim Hall, Iowa Department of Natural Resources’ coordinator of hydrology resources. “January is the driest month of the year, but over the last four days we have received nearly the entire month’s worth of moisture - which is encouraging.”

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.