Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Site Section
News & Events

California-Nevada Drought and Climate Outlook Webinar: November 22, 2021

Event Date
November 22, 2021
Event Time
11:00 am - 12:00 pm

According to the November 16 U.S. Drought Monitor, 100% of California/Nevada is in drought, with 70.6% in Extreme (D3) or Exceptional (D4) Drought. An exceptional atmospheric river (AR5) brought rain, snow, and wind to Northern California and Nevada in late October. This AR and recent storms improved drought conditions but have not come close to ending the drought for the region. The current drought developed over many months to years, leaving soils parched. Greater than normal winter precipitation will still be needed to replenish the soil moisture deficit and deliver normal spring streamflows. 

The California-Nevada Drought Early Warning System November 2021 Drought & Climate Outlook Webinar is part of a series of regular drought and climate outlook webinars designed to provide stakeholders and other interested parties in the region with timely information on current drought status and impacts, as well as a preview of current and developing climatic events (i.e., El Niño and La Niña). 


Welcome to the California-Nevada Drought & Climate Outlook Webinar

Speaker: Amanda Sheffield, NOAA/National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES)



Drought and Climate Update

Speaker: Amanda Sheffield, NOAA/NIDIS, CIRES

  • California and Nevada remain 100% in drought. As of November 22, drought has stayed fairly consistent since the start of the Water Year (October 1, 2021) with regional improvements. 
  • October’s Exceptional Atmospheric River (AR 5) improved conditions in northern California/Nevada—including soils, which can help next Spring.
  • Warm and dry conditions have been present thus far in November.
  • The drought has built over many months to years, and autumn storms do not necessarily mean that the rest of the winter will be wet.
  • Drought impacts continue, and continued precipitation will be critical to drought relief. 



Drought and Climate Outlook

Speaker: Jon Gottschalck, NOAA/National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center

  • Winter season mean temperatures are favored to be above-normal for parts of California and the Southwest, but at decreasing odds as winter progresses.
  • Below-normal temperatures are most likely for the Pacific Northwest and northern Rockies with some extension to northern California during the January-February-March season.
  • Above-normal seasonal total precipitation amounts are favored for the Pacific Northwest and northern Rockies with drier-than-normal conditions most likely for California, Nevada, and the Southwest.
  • Improving drought conditions are likely for the Pacific Northwest and northern Rockies with persistence and additional development in the Southwest and Southern Plains. 
  • La Niña and associated impacts is one of the primary drivers for the above-normal outlooks this winter.
  • The Climate Prediction Center releases shorter-range outlooks (week 2, week 3–4, monthly) that should be monitored for temperature and precipitation expectations within the winter and early spring extended period.
  • Explore Climate Prediction Center Tools and Resources.



Tools and Resources for your Winter Toolbox

Speaker: Julie Kalansky, CNAP/CW3E/Scripps Institution of Oceanography; Amanda Sheffield, NOAA/NIDIS, CIRES




Speaker: Amanda Sheffield, NOAA/NIDIS, CIRES

  • Register now for the next webinar in this series on Monday, January 24, 2021.