USDA meteorologist on the impact of La Niña

La Niña is here and its arrival could impact weather around the globe. USDA meteorologist Brad Rippey explains what the weather event could mean for U.S. crops.

According to Rippey, one thing that we have been seeing across the United States is an increase in drought coverage. He says we had only about one-tenth of the country in drought as recently as February and we have seen a sharp increase in drought coverage throughout the country.

“We are on a record setting pace in terms of the number of named storms and we see no signs of that abating,” he said. “There’s just a literal storm train of waves coming off the African coast; not all of them develop into named tropical storms or hurricanes, but enough of them continue to do so that we remain on this record setting pace.”

The weather that La Niña brings will also have an effect on the West Coast, which is still dealing with wildfires.

“What you expect to see during La Niña is that with the stronger northern jet stream we get even more precipitation than usual, often times starting in October or November,” Rippey said.

However, depending on where the rainfall occurs may help or hinder fighting the wildfires.

“So, it’s a huge concern for the Southern Great Basin, for southern California, and the southwest if these generally warm and dry conditions could persist deep into the autumn or even the winter months, and that would lead to further drought intensification, as well as keeping the wildfire season open longer than normal,” Rippey said.

Agriculture Shows
From soil to harvest. Top Crop is an all-new series about four of the best farmers in the world—Dan Luepkes, of Oregan, Illinois; Cory Atley, of Cedarville, Ohio; Shelby Fite, of Jackson Center, Ohio; Russell Hedrick, of Hickory, North Carolina—reveals what it takes for them to make a profitable crop. It all starts with good soil, patience, and a strong planter setup.
Champions of Rural America is a half-hour dive into the legislative priorities for Rural America. Join us as we interview members of the Congressional Western Caucus to learn about efforts in Washington to preserve agriculture and tackles the most important topics in the ag industry on Champions of Rural America!
Farm Traveler is for people who want to connect with their food and those who grow it. Thanks to direct-to-consumer businesses, agritourism, and social media, it’s now easier than ever to learn how our food is made and support local farmers. Here on the Farm Traveler, we want to connect you with businesses offering direct-to-consumer products you can try at home, agritourism sites you can visit with your family, and exciting new technologies that are changing how your food is being grown.
Featuring members of Congress, federal and state officials, ag and food leaders, farmers, and roundtable panelists for debates and discussions.
Host Ben Bailey hops in the tractor cab, giving farmers 10 minutes to answer as many questions and grab as much cash as they can for their local FFA chapter.