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Why does Iowa get so humid?

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Everyone knows the state of Iowa is a big corn producer for not only the United States, but also for the world. In 2019, 13.5 million acres of corn were harvested in Iowa. Well, corn behaves similar to humans, when it comes to keeping cool in the summer. The plant uses evapotranspiration to get rid of excess moisture, which could also be thought of as the process of sweating in humans. Moisture released as water vapor from the plants then gets absorbed into the atmosphere.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, an acre of corn transpires 3,000-4,000 gallons of water each day. Now that's a lot of water being released into the atmosphere! All of that moisture does in fact increase the dew point temperature of about five to ten degrees. Now, this extra moisture doesn't make up the humidity we feel in the summer entirely, but it can sure aid in making it feel awful out there.


Weather Prediction Center Surface Analysis 12Z (7 AM) Saturday 7/25/2020

As of Saturday 7/25/2020, we have high pressure situated over the Midwest, along with southerly winds bringing Eastern Iowa a lot of moisture from the Gulf of Mexico. This set up is normally one to bring heat and humidity with it already. However, the added moisture from the corn makes things a little bit more soupy for this weekend.


Forecast Dew Point Temperature for 1 PM Saturday 7/25/2020

Models show dew points for Saturday (7/25/2020) between 74-76 degrees. Couple that with temperatures in the 90s and you have a heat index of near or over 105 degrees. That makes Iowa, feel a little tropical from time to time.

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