Dire Straits: Anatomy of a growing drought - KVOA | KVOA.com | Tucson, Arizona

Dire Straits: Anatomy of a growing drought

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TUCSON – From a lofty rainfall surplus to teetering on the edge of deficit in a span of a few months.

Tucson’s 2017 rainfall was running a 3.40” surplus on August 13th, according to 4WARN Meteorologist Jeff Beamish. Since than point, the rain gauge at Tucson International Airport has only recorded 0.18”. Further, the last measurable rainfall in Tucson was a mere 0.03” on September 8th.

As of November 2nd, Tucson’s yearly rainfall surplus has crashed to only 0.05”.

So why has it been so dry since a record wet July?

The answer is twofold. For starters, the Monsoon pattern never redeveloped in August and September. In addition, the storm track during October was well north of Arizona, keeping the Grand Canyon state warm and dry.

With the rainfall surplus drying up, the Arizona drought is starting to increase. As of November 2nd, severe drought areas include portions of Pima, Santa Cruz and Cochise Counties. 41% of Arizona is in a moderate drought, increasing 15% in the last week alone.

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