Drought Information Statement
Issued by NWS Las Vegas, NV

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AXUS75 KVEF 281230
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AZZ001>003-036-CAZ519>527-NVZ014-022-100700-

DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LAS VEGAS NV
428 AM PST SAT JAN 28 2017

...AN ACTIVE WEATHER PATTERN BROUGHT WELL ABOVE NORMAL RAIN AND SNOW
TO THE REGION OVER THE PAST MONTH LEADING TO SIGNIFICANT
IMPROVEMENTS IN DROUGHT CONDITIONS...

...PARTS OF INYO AND SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY ARE NO LONGER UNDER
EXTREME TO EXCEPTIONAL DROUGHT CONDITIONS...

SYNOPSIS...

MUCH OF DECEMBER WENT BY WITH LITTLE PRECIPITATION UNTIL THE WEATHER
PATTERN CHANGED FOR THE GOOD IN LATE DECEMBER WITH SEVERAL SYSTEMS
PRODUCING HEAVY RAIN AND SNOW. AS THE MONTH ENDED MOST REPORTING
STATIONS IN SAN BERNARDINO, CLARK, LINCOLN AND MOHAVE COUNTIES ENDED
UP WITH WELL ABOVE NORMAL PRECIPITATION. THE ACTIVE PATTERN LASTED
INTO THE THIRD WEEK OF JANUARY WHERE THIS TIME THE ENTIRE SOUTHERN
GREAT BASIN AND MOJAVE DESERT BENEFITED WITH ADDITIONAL RAIN AND
SNOW ACCUMULATIONS.

THROUGH JANUARY 27 BISHOP CALIFORNIA HAS REPORTED 5.23 INCHES OF
PRECIPITATION. THAT MAKES JANUARY 2017 THE SECOND WETTEST JANUARY ON
RECORD BEHIND THE RECORD OF 8.93 INCHES THAT FELL IN 1969. IT ALSO
MADE BISHOP THE FIRST CLIMATE STATION IN THE UNITED STATES TO
EXCEED ITS ANNUAL PRECIPITATION TOTAL OF 5.18 INCHES.

CURRENT SNOW WATER EQUIVALENT VALUES WITH THE EASTERN SIERRA SLOPES
OF INYO INCLUDE AROUND 44 INCHES AT ROCK CREEK LAKES...AROUND 23
INCHES AT SOUTH LAKE AND 34 INCHES AT COTTONWOOD LAKES. THE REGION
HAS NOT SEEN VALUES THIS HIGH SINCE WATER YEAR 2005.

FURTHER EAST IN THE SPRING MOUNTAINS OF SOUTHERN NEVADA SNOW WATER
EQUIVALENT VALUES RANGE FROM A HIGH OF AROUND 14 INCHES IN LEE
CANYON TO 16 INCHES IN KYLE CANYON. THE SPRING MOUNTAINS HAVE NOT
SEEN VALUES LIKE THIS SINCE WATER YEAR 2011.

CURRENT WATER YEAR 2017 PERCENT OF NORMAL PRECIPITATION VALUES RANGE
BETWEEN 200-300 PERCENT OF NORMAL ACROSS SOUTHEAST CALIFORNIA...150-
200 PERCENT OF NORMAL IN SOUTHEAST NEVADA AND NORTHWEST
ARIZONA...AND FINALLY 100-150 PERCENT OF NORMAL IN MOST OF
ESMERALDA COUNTY AND PARTS OF THE COLORADO RIVER VALLEY.

THE MOST RECENT U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR SHOWS SIGNIFICANT IMPROVEMENT
REGION WIDE. MUCH OF INYO AND WESTERN SAN BERNARDINO COUNTIES ARE
UNDER MODERATE DROUGHT, OR D1. JUST A MONTH AGO THIS REGION WAS
UNDER SEVERE TO EXCEPTIONAL DROUGHT. A SMALL SLIVER OF EASTERN
ESMERALDA AND WESTERN NYE COUNTIES AREA UNDER MODERATE DROUGHT, OR
D1. THE REST OF SOUTHERN NYE...SOUTHWEST LINCOLN...AND EASTERN SAN
BERNARDINO COUNTIES ARE LISTED AS ABNORMALLY DRY, OR D0.

THE LATEST SEASONAL FORECAST (FEBRUARY 2017 THROUGH APRIL 2017)
ISSUED BY THE CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER SHOWS THERE IS A 30 TO 40
PERCENT CHANCE OF ABOVE AVERAGE TEMPERATURES FOR AREAS NEAR AND EAST
OF THE COLORADO RIVER VALLEY AND AND NEARLY EQUAL CHANCES OF ABOVE,
BELOW, OR NEAR MEDIAN PRECIPITATION ACROSS THE REGION.

SUMMARY OF IMPACTS... AGRICULTURAL

PER EXECUTIVE ORDER, THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA NOW REQUIRES IRRIGATION
DISTRICTS SERVING 10,000 ACRES OR MORE TO FILE WATER MANAGEMENT
PLANS. ORIGINALLY, THIS WAS REQUIRED FOR DISTRICTS SERVING 25,000 OR
MORE ACRES. THE STATE`S DEPARTMENT OF WATER RESOURCES WILL ASSESS
THESE PLANS IN AN EFFORT TO DETERMINE THE EFFECTIVENESS OF
CONSERVATION EFFORTS AND WATER SHORTAGE CONTINGENCIES.

ON FEBRUARY 25, 2016, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SECRETARIAL DROUGHT
DESIGNATIONS WERE ANNOUNCED. THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
DESIGNATED ALL COUNTIES IN THE LAS VEGAS NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
COUNTY WARNING AREA.

WATER SUPPLY

CALIFORNIA IS DEVELOPING A NEW WATER CONSERVATION PLAN PER ORDER
FROM THE GOVERNOR. STATE AGENCIES RELEASED THE PLAN IN LATE NOVEMBER
2016. NOTEWORTHY ITEMS IN THE PLAN INCLUDE CUSTOMIZED WATER-USE
LIMITS FOR URBAN WATER DISTRICTS. EACH DISTRICT HAS UNTIL 2025 TO
SET AND MEET ASSOCIATED BUDGETS UNDER RISK OF STATE ENFORCEMENT.
ADDITIONALLY, THE PLAN FOCUSES ON FIXING LEAKS, WHICH HAVE BEEN
FOUND TO DRAIN UP TO TEN PERCENT OF ALL PROCESSED WATER. CITIES AND
TOWNS ARE MANDATED TO DEVELOP CONTINGENCY PLANS FOR DROUGHTS UP TO
FIVE YEARS, A TWO-YEAR INCREASE FROM CURRENT REGULATIONS.

THE CURRENT LAKE MEAD WATER ELEVATION HAS RISEN FROM ITS RECORD LOW
LEVELS EARLIER THIS SUMMER. THE CURRENT LEVEL IS NEAR 1085 FEET
ABOVE SEA LEVEL, AROUND FOURTEEN FEET HIGHER THAN OBSERVED IN LATE
JUNE. THE LAKE IS EXPECTED TO REMAIN AROUND 1085 FEET THROUGH MARCH
BEFORE LOWERING TO AROUND 1072 FEET IN JULY.

THE LATEST U.S. BUREAU OF RECLAMATION GIVES LAKE MEAD 0 PERCENT
CHANCE OF FALLING INTO SHORTAGE - 1ST LEVEL NEXT YEAR (MEAD
ELEVATION 1075-1050 FEET), BUT THAT CHANCE RISES TO 48 PERCENT IN
2018 AND 60 PERCENT IN 2019. THE U.S. BUREAU OF RECLAMATION DECLARES
A SHORTAGE WHENEVER AN ANNUAL STUDY PROJECTS THE RESERVOIR LEVEL
WILL BE LESS THAN 1075 FEET ABOVE SEA LEVEL ON JANUARY 1. A SHORTAGE
COULD FORCE ARIZONA, NEVADA, AND CALIFORNIA TO IMPLEMENT WATER
RESTRICTIONS, AND SOME ARIZONA FARMERS WOULD LOSE THE WATER THAT
FLOWS TO THEM THROUGH THE CENTRAL ARIZONA PROJECT CANAL. THERE IS
LESS THAN A 15 PERCENT CHANCE THAT A SURPLUS (OF ANY AMOUNT ABOVE
1145 FEET ABOVE SEA LEVEL) WILL OCCUR WITH LAKE MEAD`S WATER SUPPLY
THROUGH 2021.

THE NEVADA DROUGHT FORUM, A STATEWIDE PANEL, HAS RECOMMENDED
STATEWIDE WATER METERING, WATER EFFICIENCY STANDARDS FOR NEW
DEVELOPMENT AND ADOPTING TIER RATE STRUCTURES TO PROMOTE
CONSERVATION. THE STATE`S BIGGEST WATER USER, AGRICULTURE, WOULD BE
ENCOURAGED TO USE DRIP IRRIGATION, CROP COVERING AND CONVERT
PLANTINGS TO LESS THIRSTY VARIETIES. THE REPORT ALSO ASKS LOCAL
GOVERNMENTS TO ADDRESS THE ISSUE OF THIRSTY LANDSCAPING REQUIREMENTS
SET BY MANY HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATIONS. THE SOUTHERN NEVADA WATER
AUTHORITY`S CASH FOR GRASS PROGRAM HAS BEEN VERY SUCCESSFUL AND HAS
REPLACED MORE THAN 173 MILLION SQUARE FEET OF TURF GRASS (MORE THAN
3,000 FOOTBALL FIELDS) WITH LANDSCAPING THAT`S A BETTER FIT FOR
NEVADA`S CLIMATE.

SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY UPDATED THEIR WATERING SCHEDULE AND ORDINANCE
RESTRICTIONS IN AUGUST 2016 AS A RESULT OF THE STATE WATER RESOURCES
CONTROL BOARD`S NEW EMERGENCY WATER CONSERVATION REGULATIONS. THE
COUNTY FOUND THAT THERE IS SUFFICIENT WATER SUPPLY TO MEET DEMAND
OVER THE NEXT THREE YEARS...HOWEVER...IT STRONGLY STRESSED WATER
CONSERVATION EFFORTS SHOULD CONTINUE. THE SCHEDULE AND RESTRICTIONS
INCLUDE FOUR-DAY-PER-WEEK OUTDOOR IRRIGATION ALLOWANCES AND WATERING
HOUR REGULATIONS.

GROUND WATER

THE ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF WATER RESOURCES (ADWR) APPROVED A REQUEST
BY THE MOHAVE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS TO HAVE THE NORTHWEST
BASIN PLANNING AREA (A REGION ENCOMPASSING MUCH OF MOHAVE COUNTY IN
ARIZONA`S STRATEGIC VISION FOR WATER SUPPLY) LISTED AS A TOP
PRIORITY, AS THE REGION CONTAINS SOME OF THE LARGEST GROUNDWATER
SUPPLIES IN THE STATE. THE ADWR HELD A MEETING WITH LOCAL
STAKEHOLDERS IN THE SUMMER TO DISCUSS THE CURRENT GROUNDWATER SUPPLY
AND METHODS TO MEET FUTURE WATER DEMANDS. TWO MAIN CONCERNS HELD BY
THE ADWR ARE THE LARGE INCREASE IN LARGE-SCALE FARMING IN THE REGION
AND THE STATE`S LACK OF REGULATORY POWER REGARDING MOHAVE COUNTY`S
WATER SUPPLY.

THE LOS ANGELES DEPARTMENT OF WATER AND POWER IS PLANNING FOUR NEW
PRODUCTION WELLS IN INYO COUNTY. ONE WILL REPLACE A WELL IN LAWS,
TWO IN BISHOP AND ONE IN BELL CANYON WEST OF BIG PINE.

THE NEVADA LEGISLATIVE COMMISSION`S SUBCOMMITTEE TO STUDY WATER HAS
DRAFTED A SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATIONS, WHICH ARE NOW FORWARDED TO THE
LEGISLATIVE COMMISSION FOR TRANSMITTAL TO THE NEVADA LEGISLATURE IN
2017. SOME OF THE RECOMMENDATIONS INCLUDE THE DRAFTING OF A BILL
REQUIRING CLAIMANTS OF PRE-STATUTORY WATER RIGHTS TO SUBMIT PROOF OF
THE CLAIM AND THE DRAFTING OF A BILL LIMITING WITHDRAWALS FROM NEW
DOMESTIC WELLS TO 0.5 ACRE-FEET ANNUALLY IN SEVERELY OVER-
APPROPRIATED BASINS AND DESIGNATED CRITICAL MANAGEMENT AREAS.

RECREATION/TOURISM

THE LOW LAKE LEVELS IN LAKE MEAD CONTINUE TO IMPACT RECREATIONAL
BOATING CHANNELS BY REDUCING AREAS THAT BOATS CAN PASS THROUGH. THE
FALLING LAKE LEVEL HAS RESULTED IN THE CONTINUED CLOSURE OF THE ECHO
BAY MARINA AND BOAT LAUNCH RAMP AT ECHO BAY.

FIRE WEATHER

THE LATEST SIGNIFICANT WILDLAND FIRE POTENTIAL OUTLOOK FOR FEBRUARY
THROUGH APRIL CALLS FOR NEAR NORMAL POTENTIAL IN SOUTHEAST
CALIFORNIA, SOUTHERN NEVADA, AND NORTHWEST ARIZONA.

ACCORDING TO CAL FIRE, THE NUMBER OF FIRES IN THE STATE OF
CALIFORNIA FOR 2016 WAS 5762 (ABOVE THE 4801 AVERAGE IN THE PAST
FIVE YEARS) COVERING 147,373 ACRES (BELOW THE 165,152 ACRE AVERAGE
IN THE PAST FIVE YEARS). SO FAR IN 2017, THERE HAVE BEEN 10 FIRES
COMPARED TO 48 FOR THE SAME TIME IN 2016.

AERIAL SURVEYS IN THE PAST YEAR CONTINUE TO SHOW HIGH MORTALITY
RATES WITH TREES IN THE SOUTHERN SIERRA OWING TO THE COMBINATION OF
DROUGHT AND A BARK BEETLE EPIDEMIC. SOME AREAS OF THE SIERRA TO THE
WEST OF INYO COUNTY WERE REPORTED TO HAVE MORE THAN 35 DEAD TREES
PER ACRE WITH MUCH OF THE CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN SIERRA FEATURING AT
LEAST TEN DEAD TREES PER ACRE IN MAY 2016. A MORE RECENT SURVEY IN
THE FALL OF 2016 INDICATED OVER 100 MILLION TREES HAVE DIED IN THE
STATE SINCE 2010, LEADING TO DANGEROUS FIRE POTENTIAL IN MUCH OF
THE STATE, PARTICULARLY THE SIERRA-NEVADA RANGE.

CLIMATE SUMMARY...

DATA BELOW IS OCTOBER 1 2016 THROUGH JANUARY 17 2017.

 ARIZONA            PCPN     NORMAL     PER

BEAVER DAM          5.30      2.93      181%
PIPE SPRING NM      6.10      3.84      159%
KINGMAN             5.34      3.55      150%
WIKIEUP             6.52      3.64      179%

 CALIFORNIA

BISHOP              5.59      2.67      209%
DEATH VALLEY NP     0.32      0.94       34%
BARSTOW-DAGGETT     3.87      1.69      229%
NEEDLES             2.16      1.89      114%
JOSHUA TREE         5.10      2.09      244%

 NEVADA

LAS VEGAS           1.96      1.67      117%
MT CHARLESTON      23.42     10.80      217%
PAHRUMP             4.12      1.90      217%
MESQUITE            3.49      2.91      120%
CALIENTE            5.03      3.15      160%
DYER                2.14      1.67      128%

 PCPN   - 2017 WATER YEAR PRECIPITATION
 NORMAL - WATER YEAR NORMAL (STARTS OCT 1 2016)
 PER    - PERCENT OF NORMAL

PRECIPITATION/TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK...

THE LATEST SEASONAL FORECAST (FEBRUARY 2017 THROUGH APRIL 2017)ISSUED
BY THE CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER SHOWS THERE IS A 30 TO 40PERCENT
CHANCE OF ABOVE AVERAGE TEMPERATURES FOR AREAS NEAR AND EAST OF  THE
COLORADO RIVER VALLEY AND AND NEARLY EQUAL CHANCES OF ABOVE, BELOW,
OR NEAR MEDIAN PRECIPITATION ACROSS THE REGION.

HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY AND OUTLOOK...

THE FIRST SEASONAL WATER SUPPLY FORECASTS ISSUED BY THE COLORADO
BASIN RIVER FORECAST CENTER WERE ISSUED ON JANUARY 1, 2017. THE
APRIL-JULY INFLOW FORECAST FOR LAKE POWELL WAS 6.5 MILLION ACRE-FEET
OR 91 PERCENT OF AVERAGE. DUE TO THE ACTIVE STORM TRACK DURING THE
FIRST PART OF JANUARY AN UPDATED FORECAST WAS ISSUED JANUARY 18,
2017. LAKE POWELL HAD A SIGNIFICANT FORECAST INCREASE OF 2.5 MILLION
ACRE-FEET, FROM 91 TO 126 PERCENT OF AVERAGE. THE OFFICIAL FORECAST
WAS 9.0 MILLION ACRE-FEET FOR THE APRIL-JULY INFLOW FORECAST.

AS OF JANUARY 27, 2017, LAKE MEAD`S ELEVATION WAS 1085.13 FEET OR 40
PERCENT CAPACITY. THE OUTLOOK IS FOR THE WATER ELEVATION TO REMAIN
AROUND 185 FEET THROUGH MARCH BEFORE LOWERING THROUGH JULY.

LAKE POWELL`S CURRENT ELEVATION IS 3595.42 OR 47 PERCENT CAPACITY.

DATA FOR RESERVOIRS ACROSS THE REGION (AS OF 1/27/2017)

RESERVOIR                   PERCENT FULL

LAKE MEAD                        40
LAKE MOHAVE                      96
LAKE HAVASU                      94

NEXT ISSUANCE DATE... DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENTS ARE NORMALLY
ISSUED ON THE THIRD THURSDAY OF EACH MONTH IN WHICH EXTREME DROUGHT,
OR D3 CONDITIONS EXIST IN ANY PORTION OF THE SOUTHERN GREAT BASIN
AND MOJAVE DESERT.
&&

RELATED WEBSITES...

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE AT THE FOLLOWING WEB SITES:

U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR
DROUGHTMONITOR.UNL.EDU

NATIONAL INTEGRATED DROUGHT INFORMATION SYSTEM
WWW.DROUGHT.GOV

CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER
WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV

ADDITIONAL RIVER INFORMATION...

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE     WATER.WEATHER.GOV/AHPS
USGS                         WATER.USGS.GOV/
COLORADO BASIN RFC           WWW.CBRFC.NOAA.GOV
CALIFORNIA-NEVADA RFC        WWW.CNRFC.NOAA.GOV

ADDITIONAL SITES:

NEVADA DIVISION OF WATER RESOURCES   WATER.NV.GOV
CALIFORNIA DEPT OF WATER RESOURCES   WWW.WATER.CA.GOV
ARIZONA DEPT OF WATER RESOURCES      WWW.AZWATER.GOV

NEVADA STATE CLIMATE OFFICE          WWW.CLIMATE.UNR.EDU
CALIFORNIA STATE CLIMATE OFFICE      WWW.CLIMATE.WATER.CA.GOV
ARIZONA STATE CLIMATE OFFICE         AZCLIMATE.ASU.EDU
WESTERN REGION CLIMATE CENTER        WWW.WRCC.DRI.EDU

NWS FORECAST OFFICE LAS VEGAS        WEATHER.GOV/LASVEGAS

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...
THE DROUGHT MONITOR IS A MULTI-AGENCY EFFORT INVOLVING THE NATIONAL
WEATHER SERVICE AND NATIONAL AND WESTERN REGIONAL CLIMATIC
DATA CENTERS...THE USDA...STATE AND REGIONAL CENTER CLIMATOLOGISTS
AND THE NATIONAL DROUGHT MITIGATION CENTER.

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS...
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS...PLEASE CONTACT:

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE - LAS VEGAS
PHONE...702-263-9744
W-VEF.WEBMASTER@NOAA.GOV

$$

CMS/BP
!--NOT SENT--!



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