COLLEGE STATION, Texas, May 13 (UPI) — The Texas state climatologist says it might be another problem dry summer for parts of the Lone Star state, with some areas already facing drought.
Texas A&M University Professor John Nielsen-Gammon, who also serves as the state’s climatologist, said those drought conditions persist even as other sections of the state are awash in rainfall.
Nielsen-Gammon said much of the Texas area from Houston to Beaumont and north to the Lufkin area is far behind in normal rainfall for this time of year.
“A lot of that area has only received one-tenth of the precipitation it should have received in the past few months,” he said, adding if those areas don’t get some rain, it could mean another hard summer.
That’s in stark contrast to the Amarillo-Lubbock and Midland regions, where some areas have received two to three times the normal amount of rainfall for this time of year, he said.
“One of the factors contributing to the Texas drought was the El Nino cycle. In an El Nino, with warm east Pacific sea surface temperatures, winters tend to be wet, while the opposite happens during a La Nina,” Nielsen-Gammon said. “Two consecutive La Nina winters helped to make last year’s drought particularly severe.”
Since the current El Nino in the Pacific appears to be abating, it could mean warmer and drier weather for much of Texas and the U.S. Southwest next winter, he added.
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