U.S. Drought Monitor Update for January 28, 2014

January 28, 2014 U.S. Drought Monitor Map

According to the January 28, 2014 U.S. Drought Monitor, moderate to exceptional drought covers 36.5% of the contiguous United States, an increase from last week’s 34.4%. The worst drought categories (extreme to exceptional drought) also increased considerably from 6.4% last week to 7.2%. A strong upper-level ridge over western North America kept the western United States mild and dry, while an upper-level trough funneled a series of cold and generally dry fronts into the central and eastern contiguous United States. Above-normal precipitation fell across parts of the north central states and High Plains upslope areas, but dry weather dominated with drought expanding in parts of the West, Plains, and South.

The full U.S. Drought Monitor weekly update is available from www.drought.gov.

In addition to Drought.gov, you can find further information on the current drought as well as on this week’s Drought Monitor update at the National Drought Mitigation Center. See their recent news releases.

The most recent U.S. Drought Outlook is available from NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s World Agriculture Outlook Board provides information about the drought’s influence on crops and livestock.