Spring Outlook: Drought to persist, expand in U.S. West and High Plains
2 min, 4 sec
This video runs through NOAA's spring 2021 forecast for drought, floods, precipitation, and temperature. Close to half of the Lower 48 states was in some level of drought as of mid-March, and drought is not expected to abate in most places. Combined with a forecast favoring much warmer than average temperatures, it could be a tough spring for fire managers, ranchers, and growers. See all maps below.
Nearly one-half of the country—stretching from the Pacific Coast to the Great Plains and upper Midwest—is currently experiencing moderate to exceptional drought conditions, and that is expected to continue and expand according to NOAA’s U.S. Spring Outlook released today.
Drier conditions in the Southwest U.S. associated with La Niña and the failed 2020 summer monsoon have been contributing factors to the development and intensification of what represents the most significant U.S. spring drought since 2013, which will impact approximately 74 million people.