A similar situation had occurred in October last year.
Exceptional drought in parts of the United States has led to the water level in Mississippi river plummeting for second year in a row, according to a CNN report. The level has gone so low that people can access unique rock formations on foot. The authorities are increasing the size of levee in Louisiana to prevent saltwater from mixing into drinking water in New Orleans, the outlet further said. The drought comes at a time when critical harvest season approaches and farmers across the US Midwest concerned about the falling water level in the barrages.
An area of 400 miles is at low water threshold, as per National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and US Geological Survey (USGS).
"We've been teetering on drought, extreme drought since last fall," Colin Wellenkamp, the executive director of the Mississippi River Cities and Towns Initiative, told CNN.
"We get a little reprieve, and then it's warm and dry. We really haven't ever totally climbed out of the drought from last fall for the whole river yet," he further said.
The exceptional drought comes at a time when Louisiana and Mississippi experienced their hottest year on record, according to NOAA data.
The US Midwest has been experiencing extraordinarily high temperature due to which structures that are normally accessible by boat can be reached on foot.
Water level at one of the gauges was near zero on September 20, with no improvement expected in coming days, the CNN report said.
A similar situation had occurred in October last year when tourists walked up to Tower Rock, one of the popular tourists spots in the river.
"Previous to last year, it was probably only accessible once or twice in the last decade," Steve Schell, a natural history biologist at the Missouri Department of Conservation, told CNN.
American space agency NASA said Earth experienced its hottest summer on record this year with temperature in the months of June, July, and August 0.23 degrees Celsius higher than any previous summer. This was 1.2 degrees Celsius warmer than the average summer between 1951 and 1980, NASA further said.
Greenhouse gas emissions have been identified as a major driver behind climate change and the worldwide warming trend that resulted in such a sweltering summer.
The tropical Pacific Ocean also experienced El Nino, a natural climate trend characterised by higher-than-normal sea surface temperatures. The phenomenon may have wide-ranging consequences, frequently bringing colder, wetter weather to the Southwest of the US and drought to nations in the western Pacific, such as Australia and Indonesia, according to NASA.