Mild, Dry Winter for Much of the Nation

December 19, 2012 08:34 PM
Mild, Dry Winter for Much of the Nation

There probably won’t be much snow across the U.S this winter.

Drought conditions could persist and possibly expand if, as expected, a mild and dry winter affects most of the nation. U.S. department of agriculture meteorologist Brad Rippey says atmospheric conditions could make this winter a lot like last year’s.

"If we see like last winter, a very active jet stream across the North Atlantic, that could take a lot of that Pacific energy and skirt it right across Canada and out across the Atlantic without really affecting the United States," Rippey says.

And a mild, dry winter means little or no relief for large parts of the nation affected by drought.

"We still have nearly two-thirds of the contiguous U.S. in drought, about sixty-two to sixty-three percent at this time, with the core drought areas covering the Plains, parts of the Western Corn Belt, and into the Southwest," Rippey says.

"The greatest risk for dry conditions and mild conditions during the winter months would be across the southern tier of the country, particularly from Southern California to the Southern Plains. Those areas are at great risk for drought intensification or expansion during the winter months. The lower parts of the southeast, especially from parts of Alabama, Georgia, and Florida northward into Virginia; those areas have been missing out on the moisture and may continue to do so as we head through the winter months"



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