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System Arriving Into the Four Corners Region and Southern Plains

A system will approach the Four Corners and southern Plains on Thursday to produce a few hazards. Heavy snow is expected in the central and southern Rockies. A few thunderstorms with large hail will be possible over parts of the Texas Panhandle and western Oklahoma. Critical fire weather threats from gusty winds and very dry conditions are likely from the Texas Panhandle to eastern New Mexico. Read More >

Drought Information Statement  Issued: 02/11/2021 09:36:28 AM HST


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Drought Information Statement
National Weather Service Honolulu HI
936 AM HST Thu Feb 11 2021

...JANUARY RAINFALL EASES MAUI COUNTY DROUGHT...

.SYNOPSIS:
A shift in the weather pattern affecting the main Hawaiian Islands
occurred in the second half of January, resulting in a couple of
heavy rain events that helped ease drought in portions of the
state. After briefly worsening to exceptional drought, or the D4
category in the U.S. Drought Monitor map, the southwestern portion
of Molokai eased back to extreme drought, or the D3 category. The
rest of the western half of Molokai improved to severe drought, or
the D2 category. In Maui`s central valley and the lower leeward
slopes of Haleakala, extreme drought eased to severe drought
following the January rain events. Small extreme drought areas on
Lanai and Kahoolawe also eased to severe drought levels. On the
Big Island, severe drought remains in place over the lower slopes
of the South Kohala District. Moderate drought, or the D1
category, retreated off the middle and upper slopes of Mauna Kea.
Lastly, moderate drought pulled back to the lower leeward slopes
of the Waianae Range on Oahu.

.SUMMARY OF IMPACTS:
Kauai County
There are no drought areas in Kauai County.

Oahu (City and County of Honolulu)
Rainfall data, satellite-based vegetation health data, and ground
observations indicated lingering dry general vegetation conditions
along the lower leeward slopes of the Waianae Mountains.

Maui County
Farmers on Molokai reported some growth of vegetation following
the January rainfall events. This helped ease some of the
foraging pressure by Axis deer on crops. The deer have been
rapidly consuming the fresh growth so additional rainfall is
needed to help sustain drought recovery. Although there has been
some improvement, vegetation conditions remained degraded in
Maui`s central valley and along the lower leeward slopes of
Haleakala and the West Maui Mountains.

Hawaii County
Ranchers operating in the Mana area to the east of Waimea reported slow
improvement in pasture conditions resulting from the January
rainfall. Satellite-based vegetation health data indicate that
conditions remain poor along the lower leeward slopes of the North
Kohala and South Kohala Districts. Late January heavy rain events
have improved vegetation conditions in the South Point area of
the Kau District.

.DROUGHT MITIGATION ACTIONS:
On January 27, 2021, Governor David Ige signed an emergency
proclamation declaring Maui County as a disaster area due to the
ongoing drought. The proclamation will help provide resources to
Maui County to help residents respond to the drought impacts.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture declared Hawaii County and Maui
County as Primary Natural Disaster Areas in March 2020. In
November 2020, Kauai County and the City and County of Honolulu
were added to the list due to significant drought in the late
summer and early fall. The declaration allows the Farm Service
Agency to extend emergency credit to producers affected by drought
conditions.

On January 31, 2021, the Honolulu Board of Water Supply canceled
the conservation request for all residents on Oahu. The request
had asked for reduced water consumption to help ensure adequate
long term supplies. The request was issued on October 7, 2020.

.LOCAL DROUGHT OUTLOOK:
The Long-Lead Hawaiian Islands Outlook issued on January 21, 2021
by the NOAA Climate Prediction Center showed probabilities
favoring above normal rainfall into early summer 2021.
Probabilities continued to favor above normal temperatures across
the state into the summer months of 2021 due to the forecast of
above average sea surface temperatures around the Hawaiian
Islands. The next long-lead outlook will be issued by the Climate
Prediction Center on February 18.

The west half of the state and the east-facing windward slopes of
Maui and the Big Island have the best chances to be drought-free
by the end of the October through April wet season. Leeward areas
of Maui County and the Big Island may have drought persist over
the next several months with only a limited easing of dry
conditions.

.NEXT ISSUANCE DATE:
The next Drought Information Statement will be issued on March 11, 2021
or sooner if necessary in response to significant changes in
conditions.

.RELATED WEB SITES:
Additional information on current drought conditions may be found
at the following web addresses:

U.S. Drought Monitor: droughtmonitor.unl.edu/
Hawaii Drought Monitor: dlnr.hawaii.gov/drought
USGS Hawaii - Recent Conditions: hi.water.usgs.gov/recent/index.html
Climate Prediction Center long-lead Hawaii outlook:
www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/90day/fxhw40.html
Hawaii Drought Impact Reporter: hawaii.droughtreporter.unl.edu/

.ACKNOWLEDGMENTS:
Information for this product was compiled from a number of sources including
the county boards and departments of water supply, U.S. and State
of Hawaii agriculture agencies, the U.S. Geological Survey, and
the media.

.CONTACT INFORMATION:
If you have questions or comments about this drought information
statement, please contact:

Kevin Kodama
National Weather Service
2525 Correa Rd. Suite 250
Honolulu HI 96822
Phone: 808-973-5276
Email: Kevin.kodama@noaa.gov


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