Capital Weather Gang: Droughts

Posted at 01:10 PM ET, 02/22/2013

Historic U.S. drought will continue into spring and summer, experts say

Nearly five months after expanding to cover the greatest area on record, the devastating drought of 2012 continues to spread woe across the central and western U.S. And, according to climate researchers, severely dry conditions will persist throughout the spring and summer.

By Rick Grow*  |  01:10 PM ET, 02/22/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:43 PM ET, 11/16/2012

Global drought changed little last 60 years: a problem for global warming predictions?

An oft-referred to global warming projection is an increase in the frequency and intensity of droughts. But averaged over the globe, a new study published in Nature finds little change in drought over the past 60 years.

By Jason Samenow  |  12:43 PM ET, 11/16/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:17 PM ET, 08/10/2012

Yes, D.C., we still have a drought

Notwithstanding the downpours this morning, the District and a large portion of the metro region remain in moderate drought.

By Jason Samenow  |  03:17 PM ET, 08/10/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:08 PM ET, 08/02/2012

Dry conditions, drought persist in Washington, D.C. area

For the first time in over 140 years of weather records, Washington, D.C. (based on measurements at Reagan National airport) has received below average precipitation in the first seven months of the calendar year.

By Jason Samenow  |  12:08 PM ET, 08/02/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:45 AM ET, 07/27/2012

U.S. drought is bad but could be a lot worse

As bad as the current drought is, both economic and climatic data indicate it pales in comparison to certain droughts in the recent and more distant past.

By Jason Samenow  |  10:45 AM ET, 07/27/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:58 AM ET, 07/19/2012

Drought expands into northern Virginia, continues in central and southern Maryland

Washington, D.C. and its Virginia and Maryland suburbs are not immune from the drought conditions afflicting nearly two-thirds of the country. The latest U.S. Drought Monitor shows all but D.C.’s far north and northwest suburbs under moderate drought conditions.

By Jason Samenow  |  11:58 AM ET, 07/19/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:37 AM ET, 07/19/2012

Historic drought covers nearly two-thirds of continental U.S.

The most extensive drought since the 1950s in the continental U.S. keeps getting worse. For the 10th consecutive week, drought conditions expanded.

By Jason Samenow  |  09:37 AM ET, 07/19/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:28 PM ET, 07/16/2012

Worst drought since 1950s in continental U.S.

It’s been more than 50 years since a drought this extensive has afflicted the Lower 48 states. That’s the conclusion of NOAA’s latest report on drought, released today.

By Jason Samenow  |  03:28 PM ET, 07/16/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:47 PM ET, 07/05/2012

Worst heat wave ever? Washington, D.C. ties record for most straight 95+ days, more coming

In terms of the duration of a punishing heat wave, the current spell has arrived at historic levels. For the 8th straight day, the temperature has reached at least 95 degrees in Washington, D.C. - tying 2002, 1993, and 1988 for the most such days on record.

By Jason Samenow  |  12:47 PM ET, 07/05/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:56 AM ET, 06/27/2012

Colorado wildfires: Hot, dry conditions stoke firestorm (PHOTOS)

Multiple wildfires continue running rampant in Colorado and the devastating combination of record hot June temperatures and state-wide drought are partly to blame.

By Jason Samenow  |  10:56 AM ET, 06/27/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:16 AM ET, 05/17/2012

Early week rain shaves back drought in Maryland

This time last week, drought had crept into southern Frederick and all of Montgomery county in Maryland. After one to two inches of rain through Tuesday morning, drought conditions have retreated from those areas.

By Jason Samenow  |  10:16 AM ET, 05/17/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:26 AM ET, 05/10/2012

Maryland has driest January-April on record; drought expands into Montgomery county

During the opening four months of 2012, it was as dry as it gets in Maryland according to NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center (NCDC).

By Jason Samenow  |  10:26 AM ET, 05/10/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:06 PM ET, 04/26/2012

Big storm barely dents mid-Atlantic and Northeast drought

One would have thought that the 1.5-5” of rain that fell from the mid-Atlantic to New England Sunday-Tuesday would have gone a long way to busting the emerging drought. But it shaved off the affected region by less than two percent!

By Jason Samenow  |  01:06 PM ET, 04/26/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:29 AM ET, 04/23/2012

Sunday’s rain: a soaker, but not quite record-setting

Sunday’s coastal storm provided a welcome day-long washout, cutting the region’s annual rainfall deficit by 20 percent. Amounts were fairly uniform with most spots receiving between 1-1.5”. At Reagan National Airport (DCA), 1.27” fell, just shy of the daily record of 1.47” from 1883.

By Jason Samenow  |  09:29 AM ET, 04/23/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:00 PM ET, 04/20/2012

England facing its worst drought in decades

After two abnormally dry winters, many parts of England are currently experiencing their worst drought in over three decades. If drought situations don’t improve, hosepipe bans could remain in place until 2013.What’s causing the lack of rain? And how bad is the drought?

By Justin Grieser  |  02:00 PM ET, 04/20/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:49 AM ET, 04/19/2012

Drought sneaks into D.C.’s eastern suburbs, weather doesn’t have to wither gardens

It is hard to believe that we have been slipping into a drought in mid-April, but here we are. A spring drought is a bit sneaky since it is hard for us to think about watering yet and yet we must. What are your favorite plants for holding up to the dryness?

By David Streit  |  10:49 AM ET, 04/19/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:05 AM ET, 03/30/2012

Lack of snow and recent dryness cause for concern for Washington D.C. summer drought?

Even with some — generally underachieving — rains last weekend and Wednesday, much of the area remains abnormally dry. The new U.S. Drought Monitor update, released yesterday, even shows the beginnings of a short-term drought to the south and east near the Maryland shore. Does the recent dry weather portend a drought this summer?

By Ian Livingston  |  10:05 AM ET, 03/30/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:38 PM ET, 02/06/2012

Rains ease Texas drought, long-range outlook still pessimistic

Above-average rainfall during December and January have helped ease the Texas drought in some areas. But other parts of the state are still facing water restrictions, and the Texas rice industry is bracing for the potential loss of an entire year’s worth of earnings.

By Andrew Freedman  |  02:38 PM ET, 02/06/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:55 AM ET, 12/29/2011

Top 5 extreme international weather events of 2011

Earlier this week, we looked at the top five extreme weather events to impact the U.S. this year. Not confined to any particular borders, Mother Nature also brought extreme conditions to other parts of the world in 2011, including deadly storms, flooding and prolonged drought. Globally, extreme weather events were responsible for tens of thousands of deaths, not to mention billions of dollars in damages. Let’s take a look at the top 5 extreme weather events to occur outside the U.S. in 2011.

By Justin Grieser  |  10:55 AM ET, 12/29/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 11/21/2011

Latest Texas drought outlook: grim with a few drops of hope

Among the long list of billion dollar weather-related disasters during 2011, there is one event that is still ongoing, with no end in sight, its economic ramifications growing with each passing day. The Texas drought - already the Lone Star State’s worst one-year drought on record - is now expected to last through at least next summer, and perhaps far longer than that, according to the latest climate projections released by NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center and recent testimony by the Texas state climatologist.

By Andrew Freedman  |  11:00 AM ET, 11/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:45 PM ET, 08/11/2011

Washington, D.C. is in drought. Will weekend rains bust us out?

It’s official. Our region is in a drought. Neither severe nor expectional like in vast portions of Texas and Oklahoma, but a drought nonetheless. The good news is rain - perhaps substantial rain - is possible this weekend.

By Jason Samenow  |  02:45 PM ET, 08/11/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 08/02/2011

Severe U.S. drought sets another record; costs to U.S. economy upward of $1.5 billion

Instead of receding during this sizzling, humid summer, the intense drought that has ensnared much of the southern tier of the nation during the past several months has only intensified, reaching record levels during July. According to new data, the area of the country covered by “exceptional drought” conditions was the largest since such records began more than a decade ago.

By Andrew Freedman  |  10:30 AM ET, 08/02/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:50 AM ET, 07/18/2011

Massive heat wave scorches central U.S. and expands east, as drought continues in South

A life-threatening heat wave is scorching a vast stretch of the country, from Texas to North Dakota, with temperatures above 100 degrees Fahrenheit and heat indices soaring as high as 126 F. The heat event will last all week, with the hottest weather slowly moving eastward into the mid-Atlantic by Wednesday, and sticking around into the weekend.

By Andrew Freedman  |  10:50 AM ET, 07/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:50 PM ET, 07/12/2011

Ever present D.C. rain split strikes for 5th time in 2011: what’s going on?

Last night’s thunderstorms, a few of which were severe, produced two bands of meaningful rain. One band tracked from Loudoun county through Montgomery county then into northern Montgomery and Anne Arundel counties. A second band tracked from Prince William county through Charles county. Both bands generally dropped about 0.25-0.5” of rain, with some isolated areas receiving 0.5-1”. In between these two bands, there was a noticeable gap in precipitation (where less than 0.1” fell), a recurring theme in 2011 begging the question: can this really just be a coincidence?

By Jason Samenow  |  12:50 PM ET, 07/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 PM ET, 10/07/2010

Drought watch lifted for D.C. metro region

The Washington Metropolitan Council of Governments (COG) has discontinued the drought watch it issued for the area on September 9.

By Jason Samenow  |  05:00 PM ET, 10/07/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 05/26/2010

When a drought is not a drought

Despite recent rains, actual precipitation has been somewhat below normal here since February. Most of us, however, would not construe the current weather pattern as anything close to being a "drought." We tend to reserve that term, along with the expected heat and humidity, for use during the summer. But although we usually experience at least one or two rainless stretches each summer, does the long-term average really substantiate summertime drought here? The answer may surprise you.

By Don Lipman  |  11:00 AM ET, 05/26/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:15 AM ET, 03/26/2009

Moderate Drought for D.C. Metro Area

Rainy period a real relief * Rainy Afternoon & Evening: Full Forecast | Owning the Weather * Latest U.S. Drought Monitor maps for Maryland and D.C. (top) and Virginia (bottom), released today. April showers have arrived early, and it's none too soon. You don't need a meteorologist to know you...

By Dan Stillman  |  11:15 AM ET, 03/26/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 05/13/2008

Busting out of the Drought

Doppler rainfall estimates from the Sunday-Monday storm. The yellow shade is 2.5", the medium orange shade is 4", and the dark red is 6". Courtesy NOAA. Related Washington Post story: Deluge Washes Away Area's Drought It was just this past fall when Reagan National Airport (DCA) observed a record 34...

By Jason Samenow  |  10:30 AM ET, 05/13/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 07:00 PM ET, 01/29/2008

Area's Drought Continues

Moderate precipitation deficit persists into 2008 Chart by Capital Weather Gang. Click on image to enlarge. While enough to get you wet without rain gear, today's semi-springlike showers have done little to dampen the impact of a prolonged dry spell in the Washington metro area. Rainfall amounts of around a...

By Steve Scolnik  |  07:00 PM ET, 01/29/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)