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Newspaper Archive of
Golden Valley News
Beach, North Dakota
July 27, 2017     Golden Valley News
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July 27, 2017
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4 ,) .j~, _ ) ,- ) .J .... ! ..... [ 5 Instead of being harvested, this is one of the area wheat fields that has been cut for hay. Strips of wheat, shown in the background, are left standing for later inspection by a crop adjuster. (Photo by Richard Volesky) North Dakota is in the worse. statewide drought since 2006, ac- cording to Adnan Akyuz, professor of climatological practice at North Dakota State University and North Dakota's state climatologist. . The U,S, DroughtMonitor puk-.- lished July~~20 shows more than 6 percent of North Dakota is in an ex- ceptional drought. "This is the first time since Aug. 15, 2006, the state experienced the 'exceptional drought' status," Akyuz says. Counties that are in the excep- tional drought area are Divide, Mountrail, Ward, McLean, Dunn, Stark, Mercer, Oliver, Morton, Grant, Hettinger, Slope, Bowman and Adams. The only counties that are rain during the same period, making drought-free in the state are Grand it the 15th driest March 1 through Forks and Nelson, and parts of the July 20 since record-keeping started counties adjacent to them. This area for Fargo in 1881. of northeastern North Dakota re- "Dry soil is causing air tempera- ceived near-average rainfall during tures to be higher than they would the last --90 days, according to 'be4f the'soiI were moist," AlCy~Z Akyuz. says. !'Warm air temperature is in- Since the onset of the drought in creasing the moisture demand for mid-May, dry locations continued to the air, causing the soil to parch stay dry. even further. This is a feedback of a Based on the accumulated rain- wicked cycle that western North fall since March 1, Bismarck re- Dakota is trying to get out of. ceived only 4.47 inches of rain, "It is unfortunate that no imme- making March 1 to July 20, 2017, diate relief from Mother Nature is the fourth driest since record-keep- on the horizon during the next three- ing started in 1875. month period," he adds. "Even if the Conditions in eastern North rains return, it will be too late for the Dakota were not as dire. Fargo, for regions experiencing irreversible example, received 6.09 inches of damage." Conservationist: River's use needs more thought By Jack Dura Swenson said she is "disturbed" Commission, take their input and McKenzie County Farmer Re- by the speed of decision making then would ... come back again to porter and what she sees as a lack of the WATFORD CITY - Despite 600 thought regarding the river's use. State Water Commission for temporary industrial use permits is- The minds behind the Little Mis- final action on issuing permits on sued for the Little Missouri River in souri State Scenic River Act "would the Little Missouri River," Erbele violation of a state law passed to re- have been shocked" with the said, likely in August or October. tain its natural conditions, North State Water Commission's deci- In early May, Gov. Doug Bur- Dakota's water commission has sion, she added, gum put a moratorium on tempo- voted to continue issuing such per- No public comment was allowedrary water permits upstream from mits after a review, at the water commission's June the Long X Bridge, which the water At its meeting last month, the meeting, Swenson also said, but commission voted to lift last month. State Water C ommission voted 7-1 that opportunity will come with the Burgum is chairman of the board. to allow temporary, year-round in- reinstatement of the Little Missouri However, all temporary permits dustrial use permits of the Little River Commission, which may are shut off when the river's dis- Missouri River following a review meet in August, 10 years after its charge runs at 30/cfs, Erhele said. by the State Engineer's Office. The last recorded meeting. The last few weeks, the river has Little Missouri State Scenic River "I would prefer to have the dis- run at 25/cfs. Act of 1975 prohibits industrial use cussion," Swenson said. "It's a "The drought's having a huge but awareness of the law lapsed, complicated issue but to promote impact," he said. "Right now there said State E ngineer Garland Er- the idea of temporary industrial should be no industrial pumping bele. water permits only promotes more permits available for the Little Mis- The office granted the 600 per- ... There's a depth of discussion that souri River." mits for the river since 1990, about needs to occur here that is not and Swenson said the issue comes half of which were for construction- has not and that's where we need to down to more than an either-or. related projects, he said. start." "Another part of this that I find The onset of the Bakken oilTemporary use permits are good disturbing is that it has been framed boom in 2009-10 brought more in- for up to 12 months before expira- that we need to withdraw water terest for water in western North tion, Erbele said, with most issued from the Little Missouri State Sce- Dakota, he added. Just last spring, for four to six months, nic River or there will be mega- his office learned of the illegal per- While the water commission's truck traffic, dust and safety issues mits. vote makes the issuance effective as we have seen previously in the "We made a mistake," Erbelefor temporary industrial use per- Bakken," she said. "To frame it said, "We didn't realize the law ex- mits, conditions and other items of simply as an either-or shows no isted." discussion lie ahead, Erbele said. deep thought. North Dakota could "One presumes that the staff and Little Missouri counties havedo this better." leadership of a cabinet-level agency been designating representatives for knows North Dakota law," said Jan the eponymous commission. (This story was reprinted with Swenson, executive director of the "We are to present the same ma- permission of the McKenzie County Badlands Conservation Alliance. terials to the Little Missouri River Farmer, Watford City.) Bakken Rocks Cookfest Sunglasses are among the promotional items offered at the Conoco by Richard Volesky) (Photo by Richard Volesky) Phillips booth. (Photo Top left: Whitney Stephenson of Tioga offers Hess items to visitors at the Cookfest. Above Right: Danica Northrop is among the few hundred visitors who came for the free food offered at the Bakken Rocks Cookfest in Medora on July 20. Visitors pick up food at Whiting's booth, one of many booths. (Photo by Richard Volesky) r. 2-6 4-H Show, singer~impersonator Mike Walker, Chicken BBQ, Open Class Exhibits, Cow Pie Bingo, Muddy Pig Wrestling and morel Spirit of the West Concert Carly Pearce, 8 p.m. Lanco, 9:30 p.m. August 5 Fairgrounds First State Golva Medora Beach 872-3656 623-5000 872-4444 Member FDIC ATM in Beach & Medora lobby