Thursday, October 04, 2007

Exceptional Drought

The drought across central North Carolina has now been upgraded to an "exceptional drought." That is the driest drought classification. The Triangle and parts of the Sandhills are now under this exceptional drought along with Charlotte and parts of the Triad. Prior to this week, only the western most part of the state was under an exceptional drought.

With the warm and dry weather pattern from this summer continuing into the start of the fall, rainfall deficits continue to grow across the state. Some spots are as much as 20 inches below normal for rainfall up to this point in the year. Here's a look at year to date rainfall deficits for select locations in the state --
  • Lumberton: -21.09"
  • Cape Hatteras: -20.08"
  • Wilmington: -19.74"
  • Greensboro: -13.40"
  • New Bern: -12.76"
  • Charlotte: -12.31"
  • Asheville: -12.31"
  • Raleigh: -8.01"
Unfortunately, the news on the drought likely will not get any better over the next week. While a few scattered showers are possible in North Carolina for the rest of the week, no widespread soaking rains are expected over the next week.

A look at long range information suggests the news won't get any better through the end of the year. A seasonal drought outlook released by the Climate Prediction Center today forecasts the drought conditions across North Carolina to persist through the remainder of the year.

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