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After enduring months of drought and baking summer heat, residents of the Southwest and Southern Plains will hardly be excited about the fall 2011 temperature and precipitation outlooks. The precipitation outlook for September–November 2011 from NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center indicates an increased probability for significantly below normal precipitation across half of Arizona, all of New Mexico, and most of Texas. (“Significantly below normal” means “within the bottom third” of observed precipitation for an area in a particular season.)
The map above shows NOAA’s precipitation outlook for September-November 2011. Blue-green shaded areas are places where precipitation is likely to be significantly above normal, while yellow areas are places likely to experience significantly below-normal precipitation. Moving from the outer edge of the shaded area to the interior, percentages indicate increasing probability of the predicted pattern.