In the West, signs in the snow warn that a 20-year drought will persist and intensify
Lack of monsoon rainfall last summer and spotty snowfall this winter combined to worsen the Western drought dramatically in the past year, and spring snowmelt won’t bring much relief. Critical April 1 measurements of snow accumulations from mountain ranges across the region show that most streams and rivers will once again flow well below average levels this year, stressing ecosystems and farms and depleting key reservoirs that are already at dangerously low levels. As the climate warms, it’s likely that drought conditions will worsen and persist across much of the West. Dry spells between downpours and blizzards are getting longer, and snowpack in the mountains is starting to melt during winter, new research shows.
- Tucson.com: The drought’s getting worse, particularly in the Southwest, says new study
- Durango Herald: Water supply, wildfire concerns loom over spring, summer
- Aspen Journalism: Drought and dry soils again will diminish Colorado’s spring runoff