Moisture Update

Here is the precipitation (rain and melted snow) for the last 30 days as measured by rain gauges and estimated by radar. Data in the far West was not available.

The mini-drought that was occurring in parts of the eastern corn belt and Tennessee Valley from autumn into winter has been significantly alleviated by the moisture. However, the central and southern High Plains across New Mexico continue very dry and the light moisture the last two weeks has not be sufficient to improve the situation.

The moisture forecast for the next five days shows helpful rain and snow in the High Plains of Kansas and Nebraska and too much rain in Georgia, southern Mississippi and southern Alabama.

Of course, four years ago the global warming crowd was forecasting near perpetual drought in the Southeast. The first article is from Salon.com in November, 2007:

Georgia’s on my mind. Atlanta, Ga. It’s a city in trouble in a state in trouble in a region in trouble. Water trouble…

Let’s face it, with water, you’re down to the basics. And if, as some say, we’ve passed the point not of “peak oil,” but of “peak water” (and cheap water) on significant parts of the planet … well, what then?
I mean, I’m hardly an expert on this, but what exactly are we talking about here? Someday in the reasonably near future could Atlanta, or Phoenix, which in winter 2005-06, went 143 days without a bit of rain, or Las Vegas become a Katrina minus the storm? Are we talking here about a new trail of tears? What exactly would happen to the poor of Atlanta? To Atlanta itself?
Certainly, you’ve seen the articles about what global warming might do in the future to fragile or low-lying areas of the world. Such pieces usually mention the possibility of enormous migrations of the poor and desperate. But we don’t usually think about that in the “homeland.” Maybe we should…

Next up, “Time” magazine the same day as Salon:

Georgia was enduring its worst drought in a century, and it had already asked President Bush and the Supreme Court for relief. So on Nov. 13, Republican Governor Sonny Perdue appealed to a higher power, hosting a statehouse vigil to “pray up a storm,” begging God to bring the rain he had withheld for 14 months…

Like Hurricane Katrina or the California wildfires, this drought was a natural event transformed into a natural disaster by human folly. And while it’s still hard to say whether global warming caused any particular drought or flood or fire, it’s going to cause more of all of them.
The Pew Climate blog was “confident” the drought was due to global warming.

Now, the area has plenty of water — too much if the next storm dumps 2-3 more inches of rain. The drought was gone just two years after these articles were written. And, since no drought has returned, it is safe to say the Southeast Perpetual Dought = Global Warming scare was yet another failure of climate forecasting. Please keep this in mind the next time someone claims they can forecast the climate 20 to 30 years from now.  

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