This Week’s Drought Summary
Drier weather in the southwestern United States, western Great Plains, and Southeast led to drought conditions developing or worsening for parts of these regions this week. The northern Great Plains, western Great Lakes, the Northeast, and the Pacific Northwest saw significant precipitation this week, which led to improving drought conditions in parts of these regions. Slightly warmer than normal weather occurred in the Northeast, and warmer weather also occurred west of the Mississippi River. The warmest temperatures, compared to normal, were found in the northwestern Great Plains and in the West, with some areas seeing temperatures at least 6 degrees above normal. In Hawaii, drought conditions stayed the same or worsened after another drier week. Similar conditions occurred in Puerto Rico this week, where degrading conditions were spread across the island.
In the South this week, rain fell primarily to the east of Interstate 35 in Texas and Oklahoma, and in Arkansas, northwest Louisiana, and parts of Tennessee. Overall, though, the week was somewhat dry across the region. Along and west of I-35 in Texas and Oklahoma, temperatures generally ranged from 2 to 6 degrees above normal, and some areas locally reached 8 degrees above normal. East of there, temperatures were either near normal or slightly cooler than normal. In Texas and the Oklahoma Panhandle, drought conditions largely stayed the same or worsened, due to mounting short-term precipitation deficits, decreasing streamflow in some locations, high evaporative demand, and decreasing soil moisture in some areas. Moderate short-term drought also expanded in coverage in northern Louisiana, western Mississippi, western Tennessee, and southern Arkansas this week, where short-term precipitation deficits worsened and soil moisture decreased. Drought conditions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Tennessee, and east Texas, along the Red River, and in deep south Texas, are mostly short-term. Other areas experiencing drought in the South have drought conditions on both the short- and long-term.