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Published June 20, 2011
New Mexico Drought Status(data through 6/14/11)
Data Source(s): New Mexico State Drought Monitoring Committee, U.S. Drought Monitor
As of June 14, about 94 percent of New Mexico was classified with moderate drought or a more severe drought category and another 6 percent was labeled as abnormally dry (Figures 5a–b). About half of the state is classified with exceptional drought, the most extreme drought category and one that is defined as a drought that occurs on average once in every 50 years. The biggest change since last month was the expansion of exceptional drought conditions across the southern half of New Mexico. Some limited early monsoon moisture has sneaked into the state over the past 30 days but not enough to provide much short-term relief. Widespread closures of public lands have occurred across New Mexico due to the very dry conditions and high fire danger. Ranchers and farmers across the state also have been hit hard by the worsening drought conditions. For example, poor range conditions are forcing ranchers to purchase supplemental feed each month at high costs, and the alfalfa farmers in eastern parts of New Mexico are experiencing crop yields of less than 50 percent of average (Associated Press, June 12).Notes:
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
- 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 Dubois, New Mexico State Climatologist
Please direct your Southwest Climate Outlook comments and suggestions to Zack Guido.
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