CIC Concerned That NOAA Dry Forecasts into Western Great Plains Could Be Farther East For Spring/Summer

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Fig. 1: The NOAA/CPC seasonal drought outlook valid through May 2022.

Discussion: NOAA/CPC issues new long-lead climate forecasts today. The seasonal drought outlook (Fig. 1) indicates that by June 1, 2022 the western half of the U.S. is in drought (except Washington). Drought development is forecast for parts of the East Coast and Florida. Parts of the Upper Midwest are also in drought.

The March 2022 outlook favors anomalous warmth across the eastern 2/3 of the U.S. (Fig. 2). Climate Impact Company projects a less warm outlook due to the chilly start to the month and the cooler influence on the norther states by current characteristics of the ENSO regime. Additionally, the dry forecast by NOAA extending to the western Great Plains from the Southwest States may extend farther eastward (Fig. 3). Also, the Northwest wet forecast may be too bold by NOAA.

The meteorological spring outlook (MAR/APR/MAY 2022) maintains the March theme of warmth across the eastern 2/3 of the nation (Fig. 4). The warm forecast may be too bold across the northern states due to the expected cooler than indicated March. Anomalous warmth may be broader across the southern states. Texas to 4-Corners and possibly Florida should observe early season extreme heat. Once again, a drier solution is possible in the Great Plains while the Northwest is not as wet as indicated (Fig. 5).

The meteorological summer (JUN/JUL/AUG 2022) outlook is very warm and Climate Impact Company indicates a warmer potential for the North-central U.S. (Fig. 6). Another near record to record hot summer is possible. NOAA/CPC returns a dry climate to the Northwest U.S. and a farther eastward expanse is forecast by Climate Impact Company (Fig. 7). NOAA/CPC targets the Mid-Atlantic States for heavy rains during summertime.

Fig. 2-3: The NOAA/CPC March 2022 temperature/precipitation probability outlook.

Fig. 4-5: The NOAA/CPC March/April/May 2022 temperature/precipitation probability outlook.

Fig. 6-7: The NOAA/CPC June/July/August 2022 temperature/precipitation probability outlook.