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Southwest Drought Briefing: November 15, 2022

Event Date
November 15, 2022
Event Time
12:00 pm - 12:35 pm

Drought continues in the Southwest and with another La Niña pattern looming in the Pacific, the winter ahead is expected to be drier than normal. This webinar looked at current and forecast drought conditions for Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, and Utah. It also provided a quick introduction to the Forest Drought Indicator (ForDRI), a monitoring tool developed by the National Drought Mitigation Center to identify forest drought stress.

For more information, please contact Joel Lisonbee (


Welcome to the Southwest Drought Briefing

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

  • Welcome to the November 2022 Southwest Drought Briefing. 
  • View past webinar recordings at
  • Introducing the speakers:
    • Dave DuBois, New Mexico State Climatologist, New Mexico State University
    • Tsegaye Tedessa | National Drought Mitigation Center, University of Nebraska–Lincoln



Current Conditions and Drought Outlook

Speaker: Dave DuBois | New Mexico State Climatologist, New Mexico State University

  • The summer monsoon widely improved drought conditions across the Southwest.
  • According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, parts of New Mexico experienced a 5-class improvement in drought over the past 8 weeks.
  • As winter begins, soil moisture across the Southwest is still relatively high.
  • Despite a wet summer, most reservoir storages across the Southwest remain low, indicating ongoing long-term drought. Wet winter storms are needed.
  • The La Niña pattern is likely to continue throughout the winter and transition to neutral by spring.
  • The drought outlook shows drought likely to persist across the Southwest.



Forest Drought Indicator (ForDRI)

Speaker: Tsegaye Tedessa | National Drought Mitigation Center, University of Nebraska–Lincoln

  • The Forest Drought Response Index (ForDRI) is a forest drought monitoring tool that integrates climate, satellite, and biophysical characteristics of the environment.
  • The main objective of ForDRI is to identify and monitor drought impacts on forests to help forest managers and other users of this data in characterizing drought across forested areas.
  • The tool is specifically designed to be applicable to forest ecosystems.



Questions & Answers

Speaker: Curtis Riganti | National Drought Mitigation Center, University of Nebraska – Lincoln