Water Resources Center
Drought Assessment Committee Meeting
None at this time
10 a.m. - Noon
Lewis and Clark State Office Bldg.
1101 Riverside Dr.
Jefferson City, Mo.
La Charette Conference Room
(1st Floor EAST-Rm #137)
Climate and Weather Committee Members:
A Climate and Weather Committee Conference Call has been scheduled for Tuesday, May 2 from 1:00pm-2:00pm. The call-in phone number to connect to the call is: 573-522-6043. The Gosling Lake Conference Room at the Lewis and Clark State Office Bldg. has been reserved for the call, if you would like to join Steve there.
Current Drought Update
Southwest Missouri continues to be the driest part of the state. The April 11, 2006, U.S. Drought Monitor ranks most of southwest Missouri as extreme to severe drought. The current long-term Palmer drought index ranks southwest Missouri as having a moderate drought with adjoining areas in Oklahoma in the extreme drought category.
On April 17, 2006, Pat Guinan, University of Missouri climatologist stated that “A year-long drought in southwest Missouri has built a precipitation deficit of over 21 inches. At Joplin, Mo., from March 2005 to March 2006, only 28 inches of rain fell compared with normal 49.5 inches, just 56 percent of normal.”
As of April 18, 2006, Stockton Reservoir on the Sac River continues to be a stable 8 feet below normal pool depth. Table Rock Reservoir near Branson Missouri is also holding a steady 10 feet below seasonal water levels and about 6 ½ feet lower than last year at this time.
The statewide Drought Assessment Committee’s Climate and Weather subcommittee last met on April 5, 2006. The interim drought status map has 12 counties in southwest Missouri as phase 3 - conservation phase and 18 adjoining counties at a phase 2 – drought alert stage. Three counties in north Missouri, Gentry, Grundy, and Harrison are still recommended to have a drought alert status. All of northeast Missouri has moved from a phase 2 – drought alert to Phase 1 – advisory phase.
Since the beginning of April, except for the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, stream stages across Missouri have worsened from average to below or much below normal medium flows. As of April 18, 2006, nine of 11 recording inter-net gages in southwest Missouri indicated record daily low flows for the day.
Groundwater table levels in southwest Missouri are several feet lower than last years. Lamar, Mo., observation well shows 16 feet less than last years depth and Carthage’s observation well shows 30 feet less than last year's depth. The decrease in groundwater levels in these wells is probably due to increased groundwater usage in these areas due to the ongoing ten-month drought.
Short term forecasts for the next few weeks indicate that warmer and drier than normal conditions are likely to continue for most of Missouri.
The National Wildfire outlook is normal for Missouri and normal May and June rains of eight to ten inches could help the current dryness in southwest Missouri.
The Climate Prediction Center’s U.S. seasonal drought outlook through June 2006 shows some drought improvement likely for all of Missouri.