Drought Monitor Report for Southeastern U.S.

The drought persists. (Photograph by Robert Sutherland)

Life was so simple when we were in school.

If we were sick, we stayed home.  If we pretended to be sick, we stayed home.

Family and friends helped us with our homework.  We had nap times, snack times, lunch breaks and plenty of exercise.  We could fail tests miserably and our lowest grades magically didn’t count.  We could blame our dogs or siblings for missing projects.  Then, if we could answer three out of four questions correctly, we passed our tests and were rewarded with milk and cookies.

Try that with your boss.

Unless you predict the weather.  If you’re cute enough or have a high enough Dimple Quotient, you *never* have to be right.  You just blame it on Mother Nature and toss out another “updated” forecast that will be as bogus as the last 10,000.

But, I digress….

In case you missed the newsflash, Lake Allatoona is in a drought.  Even your pet gerbil knows that.  But it takes a Scientist to make it official because they have graduate degrees in meteorology and we don’t.

So, to make it official, we bring you this US Drought Monitor Report which is produced in partnership between the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the United States Department of Agriculture, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The Drought Monitor folks “warn us that tracking drought blends science and art.  No single definition of drought works for all circumstances, so people rely on drought indices to detect and measure droughts.  No single index works under all circumstances, either.  (That means ‘So, don’t blame us if we are totally wrong.’)  The Drought Monitor is “a synthesis of multiple indices and impacts that represents a consensus of federal and academic scientists.”

Reminds me of an old friend who used to say, “If you can’t impress them, confuse them.”

And now!  Ladies and gentlemen!

[insert drumroll here]

We bring you … [insert trumpets here] the Thanksgiving 2012 Drought Monitor Report!

Southeast:  Despite cooler-than-normal weather, conditions deteriorated across much of the region, although pockets of heavy rain provided localized relief along the southern North Carolina Coast.  A disturbance triggered showers (0.75 to 2  inches) from east-central Georgia into southern North Carolina, but the rain was not heavy enough to afford any substantial drought relief; in fact, the rainfall likely staved off drought expansion, if only for a short time.  One exception was the southeastern tip of  North Carolina, where amounts of 2 to 4 inches alleviated Abnormal Dryness  (D0).  From central and southern Alabama into Georgia and interior portions of the Carolinas, rainfall deficits  continued to mount (25 to 50 percent of normal over the past 90 days) while streamflows and soil moisture levels fell further.  Dry conditions are also increasing across northern Florida, where rain will be needed soon to prevent this portion of the state from slipping into drought.

Nope, you don’t need a doctorate to predict the weather — but you need one to understand meteorologists.

Translation into English: We’ve had some rain but we need more.

Click Here for Drought Monitor’s website