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Southwest Climate Outlook Monsoon Tracker - September 2018

Friday, September 21, 2018

Monsoon precipitation varies considerably in space and time across the Southwest, as illustrated by monthly totals for various stations. (Fig. 1). Statewide patterns highlight widespread areas of both above- and below-average totals (see Fig. 4 on p. 5). The Fig. 2 plots of daily precipitation, temperature, and dewpoint temperature for the same stations as Fig. 1 capture the intermittent nature of monsoon precipitation as well as the persistent elevated dewpoint most locations experienced this summer. (read more)

Southwest Climate Outlook September 2018 - Climate Summary

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Precipitation and Temperature: Precipitation in August ranged from much-below average to average in New Mexico and from much-below average to above average in Arizona (Fig. 1a). August temperatures were mostly above average across Arizona and New Mexico, with swaths of much-above average and isolated locations of record-warmest conditions (Fig. 1b). (read more)

August 2018 SW Climate Outlook - Monsoon Tracker

Friday, August 17, 2018

Monsoon precipitation totals vary considerably across the Southwest. Monthly totals for select locations reveal near or below-average amounts compared to long-term averages (Fig. 1). There are widespread regions with above-average totals as well (see p. 5), revealing the challenge of characterizing monsoon performance using single stations. (read more)

 

Southwest Climate Outlook August 2018 - Climate Summary

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Precipitation and Temperature: Precipitation in July ranged from below average to much-above average in Arizona and New Mexico (Fig. 1a), illustrating the extent to which monsoon precipitation varies across the region. July temperatures were warmer than average in nearly all of Arizona and New Mexico (Fig. 1b), and since July 1, most of the daily temperature anomalies (deviations above or below the average temperature) have been warmer across the region (Fig. 2). (read more)

July 2018 SW Climate Outlook - Monsoon Tracker

Friday, July 20, 2018

In 2008, the National Weather Service (NWS) changed the definition of the start of the Southwest monsoon from a variable date based on locally measured conditions to a fixed date of June 15 (and a fixed end date of Sept 30). Prior to 2008, the flexible start date reflected the seasonal progression of the monsoon, with a considerable temporal gradient across the region (Fig. 1). (read more)

July 2018 SW Climate Update - ENSO Tracker

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Oceanic and atmospheric conditions remained ENSO-neutral over the last month (Figs. 1-2) and most ENSO forecasts and outlooks reflect that. On July 10, the Japanese Meteorological Agency (JMA) identified neutral conditions in oceanic and atmospheric indicators, but with indications of warming oceanic temperatures in the coming months. The agency forecast equal chances (50 percent) of either ENSO-neutral or El Niño by fall 2018. (read more)

 

Southwest Climate Outlook July 2018 - Climate Summary

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Precipitation and Temperature: Precipitation in June ranged from record driest to much-above average (Fig. 1a); the wetter-than-average areas were those impacted by the remnants of Hurricane Bud in mid-June. June is typically dry, barring an early onset of monsoon activity, so any pre-monsoon precipitation will boost percentile rankings. June temperatures were warmer than average across all of Arizona and New Mexico (Fig. 1b), including record-warm conditions in eastern Arizona and central New Mexico. (read more)

June 2018 SW Climate Outlook - Monsoon Tracker & Tropical Storm Bud

Friday, June 22, 2018

Was our mid-June precipitation the monsoon? In 2008, the National Weather Service (NWS) changed the definition of the start of the Southwest monsoon from a variable date based on locally measured conditions to a fixed date of June 15 (and a fixed end date of Sept 30). This allowed for a clear delineation of the period of monsoon activity (108 days) and focused NWS’s messaging strategy as it pertains to the expected hazards during that period, which include extreme heat, strong winds, dust storms, flash flooding, lightning, and wildfires (see NWS Tucson monsoon information hub). Prior to 2008, the flexible start date reflected the seasonal progression of the monsoon, with a considerable temporal gradient across the region (Fig. 1). (read more)

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