Jenn Withers could see ore thn fty iles ro the shotgun set o
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helicopter. None o it looked pretty. The rs nd
orests north o New York City hd turned to tinder. Mid-October wss hot s id-August hd been, the third scorching yer in row.Lkes nd reservoirs were drying up nd the rivers looked like they’dslunk wy ro their bnks, thieves in the night.It ws just s dry—or drier—on the West Cost nd cross the SunBelt. The hottest growing seson on record. Much o the Midwest hdbeen singed, too, with rers in Iow nd Nebrsk losing 80 percento their corn crop. Food nd uel prices were rising s st s the ercury.Minutes go Jenn; her producer, Nicole Prsons; nd their crewhd choppered out o New York City, the hert o drought eer-gency tht hd been declred two onths go. Tht ws the secondhighest level o ofcil pnic, right below drought disster—conditionsso dire tht they were bluntly unthinkble in etro re o twentyillion people.