Sunday, August 14, 2011

Texas cooking

The US Drought Monitor: Exceptional drought continues its hold on the southern states of Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and neighboring states. Recent extreme high temperatures have combined with below average precipitation over the last few weeks to create drought impacts in the Corn Belt states of Iowa, Illinois and Indiana.

Northeast and Mid-Atlantic: An area of abnormally dry conditions is expanded in the states of Vermont and New Hampshire. Over the last 30 days, rainfall totals of one to five inches below average have been reported across much of the northern tier of these states. Streamflow data is averaging around 20% of normal in some area creeks and rivers for this time of year.

Southeast: Abnormally dry conditions now exist in the mountains of western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee, abnormally dry conditions. This area has not received as much rainfall as normal for this time of year, particularly over the last 30 days, and streamflow data in the area are also beginning to show signs of less surface water flowing through the mountain creeks and rivers. In the Charlotte area, as much as six inches of rain feel this week, but primarily on the already drought-free area. Elsewhere in North Carolina, some improvement is warranted in the north central part of the state, with a change from D1 to D0 status. Hydrological impacts persist, however, and that is indicated as the primary impact.

A swath of heavy rain through east central South Carolina is cause for a one-category improvement from Columbia to Charleston. Local totals were one to two inches or more above normal for the week. An area of extremely heavy precipitation centered in northeastern Georgia was also beneficial. Scattered thunderstorm activity in Florida was considered, but no changes were made on the peninsula. The impacts of previous extreme drought in the Florida panhandle have subsided, and D3, or Extreme Drought, conditions are removed.

South: Texas continues to suffer from unprecedented drought. Climate data show that the Lone Star State is in its driest ten-month period ever on record, in over a century of data. This is unprecedented territory, as the precipitation deficits mount, and triple digit temperatures continue to increase water demand. Significant, ongoing impacts related to agriculture, water supply and natural vegetation conditions have been reported. Widespread Exceptional Drought (D4) is maintained in large part across the region.

No comments: