It's a helpless feeling to watch nature die.
Amanda Assali, of Houston, feels that way. She said it's devastating. First, she read an article about how the drought was killing a huge number of trees in the city.
A week later, she went for a run in Memorial Park, a large inner-city park in Houston.
"That day as I was jogging, I saw city crews cutting down trees. Tons of trees. They had to cut them because as they died, they would become brittle and break," she said. "It was one of the saddest things I felt as a result of the drought."
That's exactly what's going on all over Texas, which is experiencing an unprecedented amount of wildfires and a lengthy drought.
Andrea Morrow, Spokesperson for the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) said the top priority right now is public drinking water supplies. Surface water, she said, refers to water that comes from lakes and rivers. And sometimes, depending on the location of a community, a big lake may be residents' only source of water.
So what do you do when when that lake dries up?
"We're just praying for rain," Brown County Emergency Management Coordinator, Brent Bush, said.
Lake Brownwood, the main water source for Brown County, tops a list of 18 water systems throughout the state that could run out of water within six months or do not know how much water they have remaining. According to TCEQ, Lake Brownwood could run out by Nov. 28.
"Our main source is this one lake. There are other lakes in the area, but they're in just as bad of shape," Bush said. "There's no backup lake. It's Lake Brownwood or nothing."
He said the county has been on water restrictions for "quite some time" and increased restrictions again just last week. Now, residents can only use water outside their homes one day a week.
Brown County has a population of 2,214. Second on the list is the main water supply for Limestone County, which has a population of more than 4,000. That source could dry out of water by Nov. 30.
However, Morrow said the list changes every week as new measurements are reported. Water systems identified as in danger of running out of water in 180 days or less are put on a high priority list.
"If the situation is mitigated, they come off the high priority list and put on the watch list," she explained. "If they come off the watch list, they go on the success list."
This graphic by the U.S. drought Monitor illustrates just how few reservoirs must be on the "success" list right now:
The problems don't stop there.
"Any time you have drought, you have line breakage due to shifting soil," Morrow said.
She said this is typical in the summer months, but there's a bigger risk now. And when a water main breaks, TCEQ must send out a "boil water" alert.
"We started really reaching out to water systems where surface water is the soul source in March," Morrow said.
"Of course, there's no substitute for rain."
Halfway Across the World: When Drought Becomes Famine
At the other end of the world, Somalia is in an even more dire situation. A developing country, Somalia does not have the capacity or resources to deal with the emergency the way that the United States does.
Extreme, long-term drought has killed thousands, and according to the Associated Press, La Niña is making it worse.
Thousands continue to flee the drought-stricken country, which, until just weeks ago, had not received rain in about two years.
By July 2011 almost 400 thousand Somalians sought refuge in Kenya. More than 50 people each day were dying in refugee camps.
It is the worst drought to hit that area of Africa in 60 years. Lack of rain surely played a part in developing the drought into famine, but civil war and politics exacerbate the crisis.
According to the BBC, the famine and conditions are worse under areas controlled by the Islamist group, al-Shabab.
The group is suspicious of aid agencies, sometimes demanding money, so relief has trouble reaching the areas under the group's territory. Al-Shabab is affiliated with Al Qaeda.
The recent rain has eased the problem, but the humanitarian emergency is far from over.
National Security Correspondent for WTOP Radio, J.J. Green, says al-Shabab is "indeed responsible for holding up food aid and killing aid workers."
On the other hand, the drought and famine is also causing the group to lose some control over the region.
AccuWeather.com Senior Meteorologist Jim Andrews said that, even without drought, Somalia is considered semi-desert. On average, 16 inches of rain fall there annually.
Taking A Toll: The Human Impact in Texas
Back West, the worst of of the Texas drought appears to be in the Southeast surrounding Waco and Austin, and in the Northwest region around Lubbock. In general, however, almost the entire state is an alarmingly deep red on the U.S. Drought Monitor.
Western Texas currently has the worst vegetation conditions, according to TCEQ. But in addition to the trees and plants, animals' lives are at risk, also.
AccuWeather Facebook Fan Jan Brown wrote that one of her horses suffered from heat exhaustion and foundered when temperatures reached 115 degrees. She said that horse is finally off of medication. Regarding her other horses, though...
"Had to cool down the horses three times a day per [veterinarian's] orders, even though we're under water restrictions," she said. "It has been a horrible year to be a livestock owner."