Posted: 8:52 am Thursday, June 8th, 2017
By Kirk Mellish
Wet weather prevailed in the Southeast where rainfall amounts of over 4 inches fell in areas of southeastern Alabama and the Florida Panhandle. The excess rainfall helped alleviate abnormally dry and drought conditions in parts of eastern Alabama, Georgia, and Florida.
However, drought and dryness still linger at timescales longer than about 3 months. This week’s map reflects a one-category improvement in conditions in the drought/abnormally dry areas of South Carolina.
Recent rains also resulted in improvements to the drought/abnormally dry areas in northern and central Georgia as streamflow and soil moisture conditions improved.
In the southern part of the state, moderate (D1) and severe drought (D2) were reduced to areas that continue to show lingering dryness at 60- to 90-day timescales.
Florida saw categorical improvements across many of the drought areas in response to the heavy rainfall. Extreme drought (D3) was removed and some areas near the coasts saw two-category improvements as recent rains totaled up to 7 inches. Minor changes were made to Alabama.
The abnormally dry (D0) and moderate drought (D1) areas in the northwest part of the state were expanded slightly in response to continued precipitation departures and satellite-based indicators of vegetation stress.
Meanwhile, above-average rainfall in the eastern part of the state resulted in a reduction in the abnormally dry (D0) area. Impact designations across the Southeast were changed to “L” to reflect that the drought’s signals are at longer timescales.
Only 7% of Georgia is in severe drought now. The total population of the state under some kind of drought has dropped to around 731,000 people:
Plants under moisture stress very limited in Georgia at least for the short-term. However, any heat wave can change that quickly: