Friday June 14, 2024

Tucson Sentinel

Another winter without enough snow and rain has left much of the western United States parched for water, according to scientists monitoring a snow drought. 

Thanks to below-normal precipitation during the water season, snow drought conditions persist across most of the West, according to a June 12 report from scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

While some regions such as the Sierra Nevada range, improved over the winter, scientists say many places will see further drought development or intensification this summer.

Many locations in Washington and the northern Rocky Mountains received less than 15% of the average rainfall, with eight weather stations in Montana and two in Washington reporting record low rainfall values.

In Idaho, Montana and Washington, snow drought developed early in the season and persisted, bringing snow water equivalent — the water contained in a mountain’s snowpack — to 55 to 75% of the normal amount.

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