State gets drier, region’s drought improves

Published 9:59 pm Friday, January 2, 2009

Although the state isn’t experiencing a drought right now, a larger area of the state is drier than normal than last week.

Three-tenths of the state has been classified abnormally dry according to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor report. That is an increase of eight percent from a week ago.

Conditions are still much than they were a year ago. In January 2008, almost 40 percent of the state was experiencing a D-4 exceptional drought, and 80 percent of the state was experiencing some form of drought conditions.

In the Southeast region, drought conditions have improved worsened slightly, but the area experiencing a severe or extreme drought has shrunk. The worst part of the drought is in northeastern Georgia and northwestern South Carolina where the drought conditions are extreme.

As a whole, the Southeast’s drought situation has improved significantly from a year ago. Almost a quarter of the region was experiencing exceptional drought conditions, which is the highest rating for a drought. Only three percent of the region is experiencing an extreme drought. Only 28 percent of the entire area is exceptionally dry or worse.

Rain will continue to be in the forecast through the next five days. The best chance of rain (90 percent) will occur tonight. Other good chances for rain are Monday night and all day Tuesday.