Since the beginning of 2012, the contiguous United States has been experiencing drier than average conditions. This lack of precipitation is affecting water availability for agriculture and municipal use, as well as increasing concerns about soil quality and wildfires.
According to NOAA’s 2012 Spring Outlook, odds are that dry conditions and above-average temperatures will persist in much of the South, where drought is still lingering after making headlines in 2011. But last year’s most devastating flood events are unlikely to repeat.
In summer 2011, the South was in the grip of one of the worst droughts on record, and the fall drought outlook issued by NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center provided little hope of relief, especially for the Southwest and Texas.