Updated 8 May 2014
Here are the latest U.S. drought maps from the U.S. Drought Monitor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Each week, we will show a map of the entire United States as well as any particular states that are currently in severe drought conditions.
Entire United States
West Region (especially California, Nevada, and Idaho)
The drought in California is still very severe, and the one in New Mexico isn’t going anywhere either, but this week saw little change in either. The region as a whole was extremely stable, with the only noticeable change a slight contraction in moderate drought conditions in southwest Idaho. Overall, no real news.
High Plains Region (especially Colorado, Nebraska, Kansas)
The extreme drought in the southern high plains worsened significantly this week, almost doubling in size to dominate the map of Kansas. Just over 50% of the region remains in some dry or drought condition, but Kansas, Nebraska, and eastern Colorado will be an area to watch over the next month or so. It’s worth noting that this time last year, the drought in Kansas was even worse. Though 50% of the state was covered in extreme drought, as it is now, 20% was in the deeper category of Exceptional drought. Currently, that number is only at about 1%. This is really the northern extension of the Texas-Oklahoma drought, which is becoming a real monster. See below.
South Region (especially Texas and Oklahoma)
Conditions in the Texas panhandle and Oklahoma just get worse by the week. 21% of Texas and 30% of Oklahoma are now in the deepest category of drought, a category which covers about twice as much of the region overall as it did this time last year. In terms of total area, this patch of Exceptional drought is now about as large as the one in California, and is growing steadily each week.
These maps are publicly available from the United States Drought Monitor Map Service Page.