The rain that started trickling into Texas in the fall may finally be making a dent in Dallas, but the rest of the massive state is still a long way off from being out of a historic drought, and climate experts are warning against any premature partying.
“It’s still a very tenuous situation,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Victor Murphy. “Water concerns are a high priority. If we have a dry spring and a hot summer it will be a very perilous situation.”
The good news comes from the U.S. Drought Monitor map, a weekly analysis of dryness in the country. It indicated Thursday that the Dallas-Fort Worth region and a swath of North Texas stretching to the state’s border with Oklahoma and Arkansas are officially out of drought for the first time since July. As a result, about 6.4 million people in the nation’s fourth most-populous urban area will enjoy fuller lakes and greener trees....MORE
Here's NOAA's Drought Monitor. Although there is some relief for Texas the Southeast appears to be getting worse. If I have time I'll have a blink comparator made so you can track the progress.
[don't count on it, he never has time -ed]
From Bob Tisdale's Climate Observations, current ENSO in the 3.4 area of the Pacific is still showing La Niña conditions, neither strengthening nor weakening:
The weekly NINO3.4 SST anomalies for the week centered on January 25, 2012 are still not showing any signs that the La Niña is weakening. They are at -1.12 deg C.
Weekly NINO3.4 SST Anomalies
Finally NOAA's Weekly Update (38page PDF) to their Diagnostic Discussion:
La Niña conditions are present across the equatorial Pacific.*
• Sea surface temperatures (SST) were at least 0.5°C below average across much of the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean.
• Atmospheric circulation anomalies are consistent with La Niña.
• La Niña is expected to continue into the Northern Hemisphere spring 2012.*