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Regional Drought Update Date
July 15, 2022
Site Section
Drought Status Update

Drought Status Update for the Northeast


DEWS Regions:
Update Status:

NIDIS and its partners will issue future drought updates as conditions evolve.

Drought intensifies and expands as streamflow declines and crops are stressed.

For more details, see the Northeast Drought Early Warning System Dashboard.

Key Points

  • Severe drought (D2) developed in northeastern Massachusetts and a small portion of southern New Hampshire.
  • Moderate drought (D1) expanded in coverage across most of New England and emerged in western New York.
  • Abnormally dry conditions (D0) expanded significantly to include most of New England and western and central New York.
  • Abnormally dry conditions (D0) also expanded in southeastern New York state—including New York City.
Current Conditions
U.S. Drought Monitor Conditions: Northeast | July 12, 2022

Current U.S. Drought Monitor map for the Northeast Drought Early Warning System with data valid for July 12, 2022. The U.S. Drought Monitor is updated each Thursday to show the location and intensity of drought across the country. 

According to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor:

  • Severe drought (D2) conditions exists in 1.78% of the region.
  • Moderate drought (D1) conditions exist in 34.57% of the region.
  • Abnormally dry (D0) conditions exist in 28.60% of the region.
U.S. Drought Monitor Categories
Value Map Hex Color
D0 - Abnormally Dry #ffff00
D1 - Moderate Drought #ffcc99
D2 - Severe Drought #f5ad3d
D3 - Extreme Drought #ff0000
D4 - Exceptional Drought #660000
Main Stats
28.60%
of the Northeast is Abnormally Dry (D0)
34.57%
of the Northeast is in Moderate Drought (D1)
1.78%
of the Northeast is in Severe Drought (D2)

Current Conditions

U.S. Drought Monitor 1-Week Change Map

From July 5 to 12, parts of every state in the Northeast (except Rhode Island) saw at least a 1-category U.S. Drought Monitor degradation.
U.S. Drought Monitor change map, showing where drought and dryness have improved or worsened from July 5–12, 2022. Source: National Drought Mitigation Center.

 Animation: 2022 U.S. Drought Monitor Conditions in the Northeast

Animation of a map and statistics showing the progression of drought across the Northeast from January 4 to July 14, 2022.
Animation showing the progression of drought across the Northeast in 2022 so far (through July 14, 2022), according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. Explore more historical drought conditions.

Accumulated Precipitation Departure from Normal

Accumulated precipitation departures from normal for four locations across the Northeast through mid-July 2022.
Departure from normal precipitation (inches) for Portland Area, ME (blue), Rochester Area, NY (orange), Boston Area, MA (black), and Providence Area, RI (green). Source: ACIS.

Accumulated Potential Evapotranspiration (PET) Departure from Normal

Accumulated potential evapotranspiration (PET) departure from normal from March to mid-July 2022 for four locations in the Northeast.
The seasonal accumulated potential evapotranspiration (PET) increased at all four locations during the last two weeks, adding to stress due to precipitation deficits in Boston, Buffalo, and New York City. Source: ACIS.

    State-Reported Impacts

    Connecticut

    Maine

    Massachusetts

    • July 13, 2022: Boston Herald – Ninety Percent of State in Drought
    • July 13, 2022: Boston.com – State Energy and Environmental Affairs Updates Drought Status
    • July 13, 2022: WBUR – Drought is Worsening
    • July 1, 2022: WCVB Boston – Low Stream Flows
    • July 14, 2022: Update from Dave Celino, Chief Fire Warden, Massachusetts Department of Conservation
      • Drought-induced fire activity increased this week with numerous wildland fires burning deeper into the upper soil layer and presenting control challenges for state and local fire resources. Light fuels are showing beginning signs of curing from drought stress. 
      • Old City Fire, Townsend, MA: Stared on Sunday July 10 in a remote area of Willard Brook State Forest. The fire is holding at 15 acres and burned up to 10 inches into the ground across much of the area. Currently, it is considered 95% contained and in patrol status due to drought conditions and interior deep burning.  
      • Water Availability and Soils: Many tributary streams are found to be dried up, or with little water available as a water supply resource. Grass and shrub fuels are starting to show signs of drought stress and curing in the central and eastern parts of the state, which will add to fuel availability.  

    New Hampshire

    New York

    Vermont

    Streamflow at Saxtons River, Vermont

    Low flows at Saxtons River in Vermont

    Low streamflow on Saxtons River in Vermont
    Saxtons River at Bellow Falls, VT near its confluence with the Connecticut River. Streamflows at the USGS Saxtons River, VT streamgage (01154000) about 4 miles upstream ranged between 11 to 17 cubic feet/second from July 9–11, 2022. Photo taken by Aliki Fornier, courtesy of the Connecticut River Conservancy, July 2022.

      Outlooks

      • According to the Climate Prediction Center's 8–14 day outlook (valid July 21–21), odds favor above-normal temperatures and near-normal precipitation across the Northeast.
      • The week 3–4 outlook (valid July 23–August 5) predicts a greater likelihood of above-normal temperatures across the region. Odds favor above-normal precipitation for most of the region, except far-northern Maine and far-western New York, which have equal chances of above- or below-normal precipitation.

      8–14 Day Temperature Outlook

      From July 21 to 27, odds favor above-normal temperatures across the Northeast.
      NOAA Climate Prediction Center 8–14 day temperature outlook for the Northeast, showing the probability of above-normal, below-normal, or normal conditions from July 21–27, 2022. Source: Climate Prediction Center via the Northeast DEWS Dashboard.

      8–14 Day Precipitation Outlook

      From July 21 to 27, odds favor near-normal precipitation conditions across the Northeast.
      NOAA Climate Prediction Center 8–14 day precipitation outlook for the Northeast, showing the probability of above-normal, below-normal, or normal conditions from July 21–27, 2022. Source: Climate Prediction Center via the Northeast DEWS Dashboard.

      Temperature Outlook Week 3–4

      From July 23–August 5, 2022, odds favor above-normal temperatures across the Northeast.
      NOAA Climate Prediction Center week 3–4 temperature outlook for the Northeast, showing the probability of above-normal or below-normal conditions from July 23–August 5, 2022. Source: Climate Prediction Center.

      Precipitation Outlook Week 3–4

      From July 23–August 5, 2022, odds favor above-normal precipitation across most of  the Northeast, except far-northern Maine and far-western New York.
      NOAA Climate Prediction Center week 3–4 precipitation outlook for the Northeast, showing the probability of above-normal or below-normal conditions from July 23–August 5, 2022. Source: Climate Prediction Center.

      What We Are Watching

      Monitoring potential drought introduction, expansion, or intensification on Northeast DEWS borders:

      • Abnormally dry conditions (D0) in western New York expanded into northwestern and north-central Pennsylvania.
      • Abnormally dry conditions (D0) have also developed in northern New Jersey, connecting to developing dryness in the New York City area and southwestern Connecticut.

      Monitoring agriculture reporting systems:

      • In New York state, corn and hay crops are stressed. Some farms are using irrigation systems but anticipate problems if rains don’t supply relief.

      NIDIS and Northeast DEWS News

      The Northeast DEWS has selected a date and location for its 2022 Partners Meeting. The meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 1 and Wednesday, November 2. The meeting will be held at the Queensbury Hotel and Conference Center in Glens Falls, New York. Agenda and travel information will be made available in the coming weeks.

      Additional Resources

      This week we feature several resources related to soil moisture monitoring, drought statistics, drought/heat/health awareness, and links to state level reservoir and dry well information and support:

      Other Resources

      Contacts for More Information

      Sylvia Reeves
      Regional Drought Information Coordinator (Northeast DEWS)
      NOAA/CIRES/National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS)
      Email: sylvia.reeves@noaa.gov

      Ellen L. Mecray
      Regional Climate Services Director, Eastern Region
      NOAA/NESDIS/National Centers for Environmental Information
      Email: Ellen.L.Mecray@noaa.gov

      Prepared By

      Sylvia Reeves
      NOAA/National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), CIRES

      Samantha Borisoff, Jessica Spaccio, Keith Eggleston, Art DeGaetano
      Northeast Regional Climate Center

      Ellen Mecray
      Regional Climate Services Director, Eastern Region, NOAA

      David Hollinger
      USDA Climate Hubs

      Gardner Bent
      USGS New England Water Science Center

      In partnership with National Weather Service Offices of the Northeast and State Climate Offices of the Northeast. 

      Special Thanks

      This drought early warning update is issued in partnership between the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), U.S. Geological Survey, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to communicate concern for drought expansion and intensification within the Northeast U.S. based on recent conditions and the forecasts and outlooks. NIDIS and its partners will issue future Drought Early Warning Updates as conditions evolve.