Short-term Drought Status Summary for March 2016
The map to the left updates every Thursday. The summary below reflects changes during the month of March.
The dryness from February continued unabated through March, moving much of the state from no drought or abnormally dry (D0) conditions to moderate drought (D1).
At the end of February 31% of the state had no drought, but by the end of March only 2.5% had no drought. Abnormally dry (D0) or worse conditions jumped from 69% at the end of February to 98% at the end of March, while moderate drought (D1) jumped from 16% to 54% during the month of March. Moderate drought covers most of central Arizona as well as along the eastern and western state borders, including most of the Mogollon Rim and the White Mountains where our snowpack has virtually disappeared.
We are now moving into the dry spring season, and fire danger will be increasing as the early winter precipitation and the recent warm temperatures have increased the fire danger in both the grasslands and the forests.
Prepared by the State Drought Monitoring Technical Committee, April 4, 2016.