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Published February 27, 2013
Seasonal Drought Outlook(through May 2013)
Data Source(s): NOAA-Climate Prediction Center (CPC)
Moderate or more severe drought covers about 83 and 98 percent of Arizona and New Mexico, respectively. In Arizona, there was some improvement in drought conditions in the last month, while dry conditions in New Mexico remained virtually unchanged. However, these drought statistics do not include the recent storm that brought cold and wet conditions to most of Arizona and many parts of New Mexico, including snow to the metropolitan cities of Phoenix, Tucson, and Albuquerque. In spite of the recent storm, the drought picture is unlikely to change in coming months. The Seasonal Drought Outlook, issued by the NOAA-Climate Prediction Center (NOAA-CPC) on February 21, calls for the persistence of drought across the Southwest through at least May (Figure 11). Isolated areas in northwest Arizona and southeast New Mexico that experienced improvements in drought conditions over the past several months are expected to slide back into more intense drought in coming months. The region normally experiences dry conditions after late March, which will create few opportunities, if any, to make up for precipitation deficits incurred during the winter until the monsoon season begin anew.
The delineated areas in the Seasonal Drought Outlook are defined subjectively and are based on expert assessment of numerous indicators, including the official precipitation outlooks, various medium- and short-range forecasts , models such as the 6-10 day and 8-14 day forecasts, soil moisture tools, and climatology.
For more information, visit:
For medium- and short-range forecasts, visit:
For soil moisture tools, visit:
Southwest Climate Outlook Staff
- Michael Crimmins, UA Extension Specialist
- Stephanie Doster, Institute of the Environment Editor
- Gregg Garfin, Founding Editor, Institute of the Environment
- Zack Guido, Managing Editor, CLIMAS Associate Staff Scientist
- Nancy J. Selover, Arizona State Climatologist
- Jessica Dollin, CLIMAS Publications Assistant
- Dave Dubious, New Mexico State Climatologist
Please direct your Southwest Climate Outlook comments and suggestions to Zack Guido.
The CLIMAS Web site contains official and non-official forecasts, as well as other information. While we make every effort to verify this information, please understand that we do not warrant the accuracy of any of these materials.... Read full disclaimer