The following map is from the Federal Government's NIDIS , or National Integrated Drought Information System, within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and is prepared by Drought Monitor at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln:
On February 7th, Marketwatch bannered "Western drought spells killer grocery bills," and reported that, "consumers may see higher prices for everything from beef and milk to wheat, nuts and vegetables." California Governor Jerry Brown says that California's current drought "ranks as one of the worst, if not the worst, on record." Impacts will be felt throughout the nation. California produces "99 percent of [the USA's] walnuts, 97 percent of kiwis, 97 percent of plums, 95 percent of celery, 95 percent of garlic, 89 percent of cauliflower, 71 percent of spinach, and 69 percent of carrots" (in addition to other foods). So, if this drought continues any longer, then the cost of living, the Consumer Price Index, inflation, and all U.S. interest rates (and thus credit card costs), will be driven up; and this will affect mortgage rates throughout the country, unemployment, and the economy in general.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They're Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST'S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.