The Hoosier Desert?

by Curt Kovener        

It has been a long, hot and double dry summer. Gratefully, that season ends in just over three weeks. The drought we are experiencing won’t.

So as dry as it is, are we desert dry?

While the human body is 75% water and the earth looks like a blue marble of water from space, according to Discover Magazine, about a third of the earth’s land surface is some form of dessert.

I don’t think southern Indiana farm and forest ground has yet be included in that.

Of course we are all amazed that the world’s largest desert is Antarctica. To meet the definition of desert an area just needs to lose more moisture than it gains.

•There are parts of the Atacama Desert in Chile where no rain has ever been recorded. Scientists believe portions of the region have been in an extreme desert state for 40 million years.

So, by comparison, southern Indiana isn’t so bad.

•It is difficult to build and keep a roadway in the desert because the extreme fluctuating temperatures cause the roadway to break up and the shifting sands…well, constantly shift.

•German particle physicist Gerhard Knies calculated that in six hours, the world’s deserts receive more energy from the sun than humans consume in a year. An 8,100-square-mile stretch of Saharan desert-an area the size of Wales-could power all of Europe.

So if this drought continues, maybe southern Indiana will have some alternative energy options.