Worrying heat and humidity killed hundreds of cows in Iowa last month. These losses have further reduced the size of the total US cattle herd, which has dwindled to $100,000 more than 50-year low. This was announced by the Department of Natural Resources in Iowa Reuters that it had received a much higher than normal number of body disposal requests, including an am July 31 “to clean up about 370 cows that recently died in western Iowa due to the heat.”
The cattle deaths were tragic, but unfortunately not surprising – July was a particularly hot month everywhere. AApproximately 80% of the world’s population experienced temperatures that would not have been possible without the climate crisis. Much of the US cooks under one Series of consecutive heat wavesespecially Arizona. Worryingly hot weather has hit Iowa on several occasions. Counties across the state issued heat warnings in late July after heat and humidity pushed heat indexes to over 100 degrees Fahrenheit (37.7 degrees Celsius). after to Des Moines NWS station. The The global average temperature reached new heights and then broke its own record the following day in early July.
Larger, heavier cows — weighing around 1,000 pounds — are more likely to die from heat stress. Nevertheless, the heat in July reached such extreme proportions that lighter cattle – around 300 kilograms – also became ill and died. Workers also reported cow deaths in nearby states of Nebraska and Kansas last month, though exact numbers are not yet available from agriculture officials.
The climate is a major part of the concern, but so is the potential impact of these deaths on the regional agricultural industry. Over 26,000 jobs in the country depend on it Cattle, according to 2021 Data from the Iowa Beef Industry Council.
Extreme heat was the cause of other cattle deaths last year. to. This past June, as temperatures rose above 100 degrees Fahrenheit (37 degrees Celsius) in Kansas, Thousands of cows died. A spokesman for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment said that in just two days the agency received more than 2,000 reports of cattle deaths –June 11 to June 12, 2022.
The extreme conditions of the climate crisis have challenged many sectors of agriculture in the United States. Over the past year, widespread drought has significantly impacted corn quality. but especially in Texas. Last year’s drought too The water level along the Mississippi has been lowered significantly, Suspension of agricultural supplies to the valley, including fertilizers. The year 2023 has not been spared either. A series of atmospheric flows that brought on a winter storm A winter storm hit California earlier this year. The successive storms that brought heavy rainfall, flooding and widespread outages in counties throughout much of the state. The extreme weather cost field hands and other farm workers weeks of work and dampened it Income from crops across the state.
Interested in more climate and environmental stories? Check out Earther’s guides Decarbonizing your home, Phasing out fossil fuels, Pack a disaster bagAnd Overcome climate anxiety. And don’t miss our coverage of it current IPCC climate reportthe future of carbon dioxide removaland the invasive plants that you should rip to pieces.