The Spring Outlook encompasses temperature, precipitation, drought, and flooding expectations for the coming three months, and Mike Halpert, Acting Director of the Climate Prediction Center, discusses the outlook and its implications.
It’s natural to associate drought with heat and with summer, but drought also impacts us during winter months. Winter wheat yields are declining, and the Mississippi River is approaching an all-time low. Understanding drought conditions and how they are affecting us is part of being “climate smart.”
Last year on Groundhog’s Day, large swaths of the country were covered in two feet of snow or more after a large storm pounded the eastern United States. This year, Punxsutawney Phil emerged from his den on a balmy day after the third-least snowy January on record. A comparison of snowfall (or lack thereof) so far this season to last year's winter white-out shows what a difference a year makes.