DROUGHT UPDATE: Summer storms help Virginia’s drought improve slightly
RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) – In this week’s U.S. Drought Monitor update issued by the National Drought Mitigation Center, there is no change in the D1 Moderate drought in Virginia (the first level of official drought), but there is a slight shrinking of the Abnormally Dry area in the Commonwealth. Recent Summer showers and storms are eating away at some of the dryness in Virginia, but not enough to create any significant improvement. Within the past week, the Abnormally Dry area shrunk by about five percent.
Virginia continues to run behind in year-to-date precipitation overall as well. Here is the Departure from normal precipitation for our region into early August:
This map pairs well with the areas absent from the dry conditions depicted on the drought map earlier. Southwest, parts of southern and southeast Virginia, and also more of western Virginia are doing “okay” with year-to-date rainfall, running above normal in some cases. Richmond International Airport, as of this update, has reported 22.72 inches of precipitation, which is 4.21 inches below normal.
Compared to the rest of the country, though, Virginia is one of the least-impacted states by the 2012 drought, which in some cases is nearly as bad as the epic droughts of the 1950s and 1930s.