Tennessee Valley Remains Under Drought Emergency
The Alabama Drought Monitoring & Impact Group chose to keep Northern Alabama under a drought emergency after meeting Tuesday, December 13th. The Office of Water Resources releases the drought declarations after the group meets to go over current and expected conditions including rainfall, streamflow, reservoir and groundwater levels. The group also meets to discuss advisements to be made for the US Drought Monitor, which is released every Thursday.
For the first time in a long time, they did get to share some good news: drought conditions have improved. It takes more than a few good soakings to get out of a drought like the one we’re currently in though. The recent rainfall has brought mostly short term relief. Streamflow and water levels improve right after rain, but the improvements haven’t lasted longer than a few days. It will take consistent rainfall over a longer period of time to see lasting improvements.
As of the last US Drought Monitor most of Alabama is still in a severe drought, and according to the Palmer Drought Index it’ll take up to 9 inches of additional rain to end the drought. That is still a big improvement; before we started December we needed closer to a foot of rain.