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 HOME > Expert Assessments > Drought Information > Monthly Drought Outlook
United States Monthly Drought Outlook Graphic - click on image to enlarge
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Latest Monthly Assessment - The Monthly Drought Outlook for July is based on initial conditions, climatology, an expected El Niño event, and precipitation forecasts on time scales ranging from the next 5 or 7 days (from the Weather Prediction Center) to the 6-10 day, 8-14 day, and updated July Monthly Outlooks issued by the Climate Prediction Center. Drought is expected to persist or worsen in the Far West (July is normally dry and warm) where large sections are in D3 or D4 drought, and potentially develop in parts of Oregon where decent odds for above-normal temperatures are forecast in the short, medium, and monthly time scales. In contrast, an expected robust Southwest monsoon in the southern Rockies (where July is normally one of the wettest months) and eastern Great Basin is expected to show some drought improvement by the end of the month. In the central Plains, recent heavy rains and short-term forecasts favor additional improvement or removal in eastern Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, northern Oklahoma, and western Missouri. Heavy rains along the western Gulf Coast after the June 24 Drought Monitor, plus chances for more rain in early July, should be enough to improve drought there. A small area of D1 in eastern Iowa should also disappear by July 31 as heavy rains are expected during the next week. Drought should mostly persist in the southern Plains (eastern New Mexico and Texas), although some scattered monsoonal showers could dampen the western and northern edges, while modest drought expansion is forecast in northeastern Texas and southeastern Oklahoma that are already abnormally dry (D0), have 60- to 90-day deficits, and the monthly forecast favors below-normal July rainfall. Elsewhere, a mixed signal of forecasts (5-, 7-, 8-14 days favor near or above-normal precipitation, 6-10 day and monthly tilt toward sub-median rainfall) makes for difficult drought forecasting, but growing short-term D0 and precipitation that have been underwhelming as compared to the forecasts is expected to expand drought in the south-central Appalachians. Outside the lower 48 States, drought removal is expected in central Molokai where both July and JAS odds tilt toward above-median rainfall. Drought development is predicted for central Puerto Rico where abnormal dryness already exists, and an expected El Niño portends a quiet (below-normal convection and rainfall) Atlantic and Caribbean tropical season.

Forecaster: D. Miskus

Next Monthly Drought Outlook issued: July 31, 2014 at 3:00 PM EDT

Monthly Drought Outlook Discussion

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