[image-1]South Carolina Drought Response Committee announced on Thurs. Jan. 30 that all c

ounties in the state are drought-free. Since May 2019, parts of S.C. have been in a drought, bringing low stream flows and increased wildfires, according to the state’s climatologist Hope Mizzell.

The S.C. Department of Natural Resources reports that conditions had improved in the fall and heavy rain in December brought relief to the 27 counties experiencing drought conditions in the state. In October, six counties were considered in “extreme drought” by the U.S. Drought Monitor. Several weeks later, on Oct. 31, Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue declared the drought a natural disaster in parts of South Carolina.

Eva Moore, communications director for the S.C. Dept. of Agriculture, says the department received reports from farmers of dry pastures and plant stress during the drought.

In September 2019, the Southeast experienced a flash drought, thanks to record-breaking high temperatures and a lack of precipitation. The flash drought produced “significant” agricultural impacts, according to a quarterly report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Declining pasture conditions and reduction in water supplies led to a concern over limited resources from many livestock farmers.