Drought conditions aren’t going to be improving anytime soon.
The latest seasonal drought outlook, which takes us through the end of July, shows drought conditions sticking around for most of the West, the southern Plains, and Texas.
More than a third of the contiguous United States is under at least a moderate drought. While that’s an overall improvement from a year ago, things have actually gotten worse for the areas hardest hit. These are places such as California’s Central Valley and northern Texas.
Long-term forecast models have most of the country seeing a normal spring with rainfall totals near the average. The only exception to that may be the four corners region, where some additional rain may fall ahead of the monsoon season.
This is especially bad for California and Texas, who have only seen drought conditions worsen since the beginning of the year.
Where things currently stand, it would take about a foot and a half of rain in parts of California to end the drought. In Texas, that number is closer to six inches.
There’s still a chance for things to get better. It’s looking more and more like an El Niño will form by August. That means extra rainfall for California, the Southwest, and Texas, all places that could use extra rainfall sooner rather than later.
Follow Storm Shield Meteorologist Jason Meyers via the Storm Shield app on twitter, @StormShieldApp and Facebook. Download the Storm Shield Weather Radio App for your iPhone or Android device and get severe weather alerts wherever you are.