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Texas Drought Status Webinar: April 27, 2022

Event Date
April 27, 2022
Event Time
10:00 am - 11:00 am

Drought in Texas has expanded and worsened during early 2022. The US Drought monitor shows 53.5% of the state in Extreme (D3) or Exceptional (D4) drought, the highest percentage since February of 2012. In this webinar John Nielsen-Gammon, Texas State Climatologist, and Victor Murphy, with the National Weather Service, talked about current drought conditions, the long-range forecast, and the impact recent precipitation had on drought conditions across the state.

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Welcome to the Texas Drought Conditions Webinar

Speaker: Joel Lisonbee, NOAA's National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) / University of Colorado Boulder

  • Welcome
  • Introducing the speakers:
    • Dr. John Nielsen-Gammon, Texas A&M University, Texas State Climatologist, Southern Regional Climate Center
    • Victor Murphy, NOAA National Weather Service Southern Region



Texas Drought Status

Speaker: John Nielsen-Gammon, Texas State Climatologist

  • Recent rainfall improved conditions over northeast Texas, but western Texas continues in exceptional (D4) drought conditions.
  • Current widespread dry conditions began around September 2021. This includes several locations, such as Lubbock, that have seen the driest September through April period on record.
  • The 24-month Standardized Precipitation Index shows that regions along the Rio Grande, the Texas Hill Country, and the Texas Panhandle are having to deal with longer-term drought issues.



Drought Outlook for Texas for May–August 2022

Speaker: Victor Murphy, National Weather Service Southern Region

  • Except for deep south Texas and El Paso, April–June is generally the wettest time of the year for most of Texas. Rainfall during these months will be critical for potential drought improvement.
  • Tropical cyclone activity is a huge wildcard starting in June. NOAA will release the Atlantic Basin Outlook on May 25.
  • Seasonal outlooks show that far north and northeast Texas look okay through mid-May with only moderate drought at worst. The forecast is less rosy afterwards.
  • Monsoonal rains in July–September will determine the outlook for El Paso and far west Texas.
  • August–October rainfall will determine the fate of deep south Texas and the lower coast.
  • Elsewhere, forecasts are not too optimistic for drought recovery through the summer.



Questions & Answers

Moderator: Joel Lisonbee, NOAA/NIDIS, CIRES/CU Boulder