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Map released: Thurs. September 12, 2019
Data valid: September 10, 2019 at 8 a.m. EDT

Intensity:

  • None
  • D0 (Abnormally Dry)
  • D1 (Moderate Drought)
  • D2 (Severe Drought)
  • D3 (Extreme Drought)
  • D4 (Exceptional Drought)
  • No Data

Author(s):


The Drought Monitor focuses on broad-scale conditions. Local conditions may vary. See accompanying text summary for forecast statements.


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Statistics


Estimated Population in Drought Areas:


West Drought Summary

While precipitation returned to the Pacific Northwest and conditions improved, the Southwest continued to have a disappointing summer monsoon as only scattered light showers fell across central New Mexico and central Colorado. Rains also fell on most of Idaho and western Wyoming as cold fronts squeezed out moisture from the Pacific Ocean and the southwest monsoon. With June-August completed, the precipitation rankings for the Four Corner States were a disappointment. According to NCEI, Arizona had the driest (1) JJA on record, followed by Utah (8), New Mexico (10), and Nevada (12), with records going back to 1895. Combined with much above normal JJA temperatures (New Mexico 6th and Arizona 12th warmest), the beneficial impacts from a snowy winter and cool and wet spring have faded, and have been replaced by summer’s heat, dryness, and negative impacts. The SPEI, which combines precipitation and temperature effects, was the lowest on record for Arizona in August, July-August, and June-August. With this sudden downturn during the past 3 months, impacts have rapidly surfaced, and as a result, a widespread, 1-category deterioration was made to most of Arizona (D1 and D2 expansion) and bordering areas (e.g. southern Utah, southwest Colorado, and western New Mexico). Southeastern New Mexico has also been dry at 60-days, thus D1 expanded there from west Texas. USDA/NASS pasture and range conditions rated poor or very poor have risen to 41% in Arizona and 46% in New Mexico. In sharp contrast, welcome beneficial rains fell across the Northwest, signaling an uptick in precipitation in the region during the past 30-60 days. With locally heavy amounts (2-4 inches) in western Oregon and Washington and USGS stream flows responding, D2 was reduced in the Olympic Peninsula and northern Cascades of Washington; D1 shrunk in northwestern Oregon, southwestern and northeastern Washington and around the Puget Sound; and D0 removed in west-central Oregon. Hopefully the increase in precipitation normally seen during the late summer and fall months will continue to ease the drought.

Full Summary

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