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Published July 25, 2012
New Mexico Drought Status(data through 7/17/12)
Data Source(s): New Mexico State Drought Monitoring Committee, U.S. Drought Monitor
Drought conditions changed very little across New Mexico over the past 30 days. Nearly all of New Mexico continues to experience some level of drought. about 80 percent of the state is classified with at least severe drought, according to the July 17 update of the U.S. Drought Monitor (Figures 5a–b). So far, the monsoon has not provided drought relief. The majority of the eastern and southern regions have received less than 25 percent of average precipitation over the past month. These areas are also where drought conditions are the worst, which is helping to perpetuate extreme drought.
In drought-related news, Cibola County has been added to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s recent counties that have been declared drought disaster areas (Alamogordo Daily News, July 19). The county, in the northwestern corner of the state, has joined the growing list of counties eligible for supplemental funds to mitigate losses incurred by the dry conditions; more than 39 counties filed the declaration in recent weeks. The Southwest is only one of many regions experiencing devastating droughts. More than 60 percent of the U.S. is classified with at least moderate drought, and the total number of counties with drought disaster declarations exceeds 1,300 so far this year.
The New Mexico 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.
This summary contains substantial contributions from the New Mexico Drought Working Group.
For the most current drought status map, visit:
For the most current Drought Status Reports, 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.
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