While the Southwest saw record-setting snowpack in the winter of 2023, the Monsoon season has been nearly non-existent. As a result, short-term drought has increased in New Mexico, and long-term drought conditions persisted in Arizona and Nevada. Recently, Hurricane/Tropical Storm Hilary provided some much needed relief for western states, though the heavy precipitation created flooding issues for the higher elevations. New Mexico did not benefit from that system and is degrading in drought status statewide. As the region transitions to fall, a continued El Niño signal and higher-than-average temperatures persist, and drought conditions are expected to worsen.
This webinar looked at current and forecasted drought conditions for Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, and Utah. Following the conditions update, Shana Tighi with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation discussed current conditions and projected operations in the Lower Colorado River Basin.
For additional information, please contact Gretel Follingstad.