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Published January 25, 2011
Arizona Drought Status(data through 1/18/11)
Data Source(s): U.S. Drought Monitor
A storm system in late December helped to reduce abnormally dry conditions across northern and central Arizona, but most of the southern half of the state remains under moderate drought conditions, according to the January 18 update of the U.S. Drought Monitor (Figure 4a). Although few winter storms have passed through the Southwest so far this winter, several powerful storms have dumped copious rain and snow in northern Arizona. However, very little precipitation has fallen anywhere in Arizona since January 1, perpetuating drought conditions in many regions, especially over the southeastern corner of the state. Currently, 32 percent of Arizona is experiencing moderate drought conditions, down from 36 percent about one month ago (Figure 4b). Also, 18 percent of the state is classified as abnormally dry, down from 58 percent on December 21.
Drought impact reports logged on Arizona DroughtWatch have helped confirm that conditions are improving across northern Arizona and that some regions are still mired in drought. Several reports note that earthen watering tanks for livestock have yet to fill southern Arizona. If conditions continue to be drier than average for the remainder of the winter, which is expected, ranchers could face problems later in the season. More drought impact reports can be viewed on Arizona DroughtWatch’s webpage at http://azdroughtwatch.org/.Notes:
The Arizona section of the U.S. Drought Monitor is released weekly (every Thursday) and represents data collected through the previous Tuesday. The maps are based on expert assessment of variables including (but not limited to) the Palmer Drought Severity Index, soil moisture, streamflow, precipitation, and measures of vegetation stress, as well as reports of drought impacts. It is a joint effort of several agencies.
For the most current drought status map, visit:
For monthly short-term and quarterly long-term Arizona drought status maps, visit:
Southwest Climate Outlook Staff
- Michael Crimmins, UA Extension Specialist
- Stephanie Doster, Institute of the Environment Editor
- Dan Ferguson, CLIMAS Program Director
- Gregg Garfin, Founding Editor, Institute of the Environment
- Zack Guido, CLIMAS Associate Staff Scientist
- Gigi Owen, CLIMAS Assistant Staff Scientist
- Nancy J. Selover, Arizona State Climatologist
- Jessica Swetish, CLIMAS Publications Assistant
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