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Published January 23, 2013
Arizona Drought Status(data through 1/15/13)
Data Source(s): U.S. Drought Monitor
Several cold winter storms moved across the Southwest in December but they ferried in little moisture and, consequently, brought little drought relief to the region. Drought conditions remained largely unchanged between mid-December and mid-January, according to the January 15 update of the U.S. Drought Monitor (Figures 4a–b). All of the state continues to observe some level of drought with over 97 percent at the moderate level or worse, the same as last month. While the December storms brought little precipitation to lower elevations in central and western Arizona, they did help increase snowpack levels to near average along the Mogollon Rim.
In drought-related news, the U.S. Department of Agriculture designated Apache, Maricopa, Navajo, and Pinal counties in Arizona as Primary Natural Disaster Areas due to the persistence of long-term drought conditions across the region. The USDA declaration allows farmers and ranchers to apply for low-interest emergency loans to support operations impacted by drought conditions.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